NYS partners with Cuba for cancer research

September 26, 2018 10:31 PM

We could be one step closer to curing cancer, and it could be done right here in New York State with help from Cuba. 

On Wednesday, a venture to research and develop new cancer treatments was launched centering around Roswell Park in Buffalo.


Giving the Buffalo-based center access to technology and research with a center in Cuba, and vice versa, will advance the research and development of new cancer medicines that could prolong and enhance survival for thousands of patients here in the US. 

In 2017, News10NBC first reported that a drug developed in Cuba was proving to slow the progression of lung cancer. However, for years, patients in the states weren't able to access it. 

It wasn't until the US normalized relations with Cuba, that the team with the Roswell Park Cancer Institute was able to work with scientists in Cuba, who developed the drug called CIMAvax, and bring it back to Buffalo to test its safety and effectiveness. 

Now, the two centers have formed the Innovative Immunotherapy Alliance. The alliance allows the centers to ban together resources to research and develop new cancer treatments. 

"You have saved lives but you have more lives to save and you have more work to do," Gov. Cuomo said. "This cancer is a scourge on society and until you have met the beast or the beast has visited your home, it's hard to appreciate how devastating cancer is."  

Medical evidence shows CIMAvax could also treat and prevent other forms of cancer. 

A trial is now open for people with stage IIIB or IV non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who have been treated previously by one line of chemotherapy.

If you think you are eligible, a link for the application can be found here. 


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