Sixty percent of people diagnosed with cancer now survive more than five years. Between 1990 and 1995 cancer incidence and death rates dropped for the first time in 20 years. In 1998 the ACS, the NCI, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed that cancer rates are still on the decline.

In the past 40 years, the death rate from cancer in children has dropped 62 percent. These improved cancer statistics are due in part to behavioral and lifestyle changes, but equal credit goes to the advances in cancer research that have taken place in the last three decades.

Research is at the heart of the American Cancer Society’s mission. For more than 60 years, the Society has been finding answers that save lives – from changes in lifestyle to new approaches in therapies to improving cancer patients’ quality-of-life. No single nongovernmental, not-for-profit organization in the US has invested more to find the causes and cures of cancer than the American Cancer Society. We relentlessly pursue the answers that help us understand how to prevent, detect, and treat all cancer types. We combine the world’s best and brightest researchers with the world’s largest, oldest, and most effective community-based anti-cancer organization to put answers into action.

The Society's comprehensive research program consists of extramural grants, as well as intramural research programs.

The Extramural Grants department reviews and administers both Research Grants and Health Professional Training Grants (HPTGs). HPTGs include both grants and scholarships awarded to nurses, physicians, and oncology social work professionals. As the nation's largest private, not-for-profit source of funds for scientists studying cancer, the American Cancer Society (ACS) focuses its funding on investigator-initiated, peer-reviewed proposals.

The Extramural Grant department is headed by David Ringer, PhD, MPH, National Vice President, Extramural Grants.

Intramural Research department is comprised of six programs: Epidemiology, Surveillance Research, Health Services Research, International Tobacco Control Research, the Behavioral Research Center (BRC), and the Statistics and Evaluation Center (SEC). All intramural department staff conduct applied cancer research in-house. Click the links below to learn more about each of the six programs.

The Intramural Research department is headed by Elizabeth Ward, PhD, National Vice President, Intramural Research.

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