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Cancer Rates Drop for Second Straight Year; Robust Pipeline of New Medicines Offers Even More Hope

WASHINGTON, January 17, 2007 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) president and CEO Billy Tauzin released the following statement on the decline in cancer rates announced today by the American Cancer Society:

"The American Cancer Society's announcement today that cancer rates have dropped for the second year in a row is very good news for American patients.

"According to the American Cancer Society, prevention, early detection, and a steady stream of new and improved cancer treatments developed by pharmaceutical research companies are helping save the lives of cancer patients every day. The Society has noted previously that more than 10 million Americans with a history of cancer are alive today because of advances in the detection and treatment of this disease.

"In 2003, the total number of people who died of cancer went down for the first time in over 70 years, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. Today's report found that 3,014 fewer people died from cancer in 2004 than in 2003.

"Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates there will be 1,444,920 new cases of cancer and 559,650 cancer deaths in 2007. In addition to cancer's devastating human toll, the National Institutes of Health estimates that it costs our society $210 billion annually.

"But there's more hope on the way. America's pharmaceutical research companies are developing 646 new medicines that can treat or prevent many types of cancer in the future. I know from personal experience just how devastating cancer can be, and I know that these new medicines -- along with the good news about the drop in cancer death rates -- are giving new and welcome hope to patients with cancer."

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country's leading pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies, which are devoted to inventing medicines that allow patients to live longer, healthier, and more productive lives. PhRMA companies are leading the way in the search for new cures. PhRMA members alone invested an estimated $39.4 billion in 2005 in discovering and developing new medicines. Industry-wide research and investment reached a record $51.3 billion in 2005.

Posted: January 2007