Cancer “Moon Shot” Being Supported by U.S. Veterans

Houston, Tx , USA , 02/12/2016 /SubmitPressRelease123/

During his 2016 State of the Union address, U.S. President Barack Obama announced plans for what he called a “moon shot” in cancer research. The name refers to a massive investment in funds dedicated to quickly advancing cancer research in much the same way that the space program that was pushed in the 1960s put a man on the moon. As more is learned about what will be done to accomplish this far-reaching goal, it has become apparent that U.S. veterans will play a key role in the project by contributing their blood.

Where members of the Army, Navy, Marines and other armed services have shed blood on the field of battle in the past, their newest contribution will be to provide blood to a Veterans Affairs project called the Million Veterans Program. The program has been in place for six years already, and it is collected blood samples from veterans so that researchers can use them to study illness. Because there are so many illnesses like mesothelioma, which veterans are at particular risk for, it is thought that their blood samples will prove to be of particular value. Where in the past, researchers have been required to identify and recruit people with a specific illness in order to test their blood, the repository will allow scientists to simply request a specific type of sample from what has already been collected.

Dr. Mary Brophy is director of the repository, which has already collected 1.8 million vials of blood. In explaining the advantage that the repository will provide, she says, “If I want to do a study in Gulf War Illness, before I would have to go out and find all these patients with Gulf War Illness, do it myself, then get the samples, store it and sent it out to a research lab. The biorepository eliminates those time consuming steps by making the VA the go-to place for medical researchers.” 

Because veterans make up more than one third of those diagnosed with mesothelioma, it is likely that the Million Veterans Program will be of great use to those studying the asbestos-related disease. Veterans who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma already receive many important benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs, but the process of showing that a mesothelioma diagnosis is caused by exposure during military service can be complex. The asbestos attorneys at Danziger & De Llano can help you with this process, as well as explain other ways that you may receive compensation for your illness. Call us today at 800-818-5043 to set up a free consultation.

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