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Summer 2006, Vol. 1 Issue 2


NCI to Publish First Annual Report on CAM and Cancer Research

Led by the efforts of OCCAM, NCI plans to release in fall 2006 the first in a series of annual reports regarding the agency's cancer CAM activities. This publication, NCI's CAM Annual Report: Fiscal Year 2005, will be a collection of the successes, large and small, of the cancer CAM communication, training, and research projects that NCI has sponsored between October 1, 2004 and September 30, 2005, as well as results announced in that period from previously funded projects.

The report will present research highlights from NCI's comprehensive grant portfolio organized by the strategic areas as defined in The NCI Strategic Plan for Leading the Nation, cancer CAM information products, meetings and workshops, and a reference list of peer-reviewed literature that resulted from NCI grant awards. The report also will provide a closer look at the definitions of CAM as well as a break-down of NCI's CAM research portfolio by CAM category.

"This annual progress report on NCI's CAM research and programs was commissioned to communicate the breadth and depth of the projects contained in NCI's CAM portfolio, to share the commitment of the research community that I witness every day, and to convey the sense of hope that progress brings," noted Mark Clanton, M.D., NCI Deputy Director and Deputy Director for Cancer Care Delivery Systems.

Project summaries featured in the "CAM Annual Report" will include:

  • The Women's Healthy Eating and Living (WHEL) Study Testing High Vegetable Diet for Breast Cancer Recurrence
  • Milk Thistle and Prostate Cancer: Moving from Bench to Bedside
  • New PDQ CAM Summaries Developed for Patients and Health Professionals

"I am encouraged and excited about what NCI has accomplished in advancing the development of evidence-based CAM and what each of those achievements means for the future," Clanton said. "I commend the work of our NCI scientists and the many extramural researchers who we support through our various programs."

The announcement of the publication of NCI's CAM Annual Report will be made on the OCCAM Web site, and it will be available online at Printed copies may also be ordered through NCI's Cancer Information Service by calling 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237).

Investing in Cancer CAM Research: An Analysis of NCI's CAM Portfolio

After each fiscal year comes to a close, OCCAM takes an in-depth look at NCI's CAM research expenditures. This yearly analysis is an exercise which reveals an estimated total amount of funding that goes to cancer CAM research projects (both intramural and extramural research) and breakdowns according to the type of research (prevention, treatment, side effect/symptom management, and epidemiology), CAM category, and cancer type.

Analysis of the NCI's fiscal year 2005 (FY 05) CAM portfolio of projects shows that the agency has funded over 400 research projects which include an assortment of intramural projects and extramural grants, cooperative agreements, contracts, and supplements. The estimated total for NCI's CAM research expenditures is $121,077,000.

One example of information gained from the portfolio analysis is the breakdown of cancer CAM research by approach. The accompanying pie-chart shows the distribution of the NCI's CAM research grants by: prevention, treatment, symptom/side-effect management, and epidemiology. (See pie-chart). In FY 05, 72 % of cancer CAM-related research funds were spent on various cancer prevention efforts, while treatment, symptom/side-effect management, and epidemiology received 18%, 6%, and 4%, respectively.

Examination of NCI's CAM portfolio is an important step in helping to identify research gaps in the field of cancer CAM and to encourage dialogue about the potential direction of future research. A detailed analysis of NCI's CAM portfolio will be available in the publication NCI CAM Annual Report: Fiscal Year 2005, see previous article for more information.

Can't wait another 6 months for the next newsletter to get your CAM news…

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