Project aims to speed development of cancer-fighting drugs - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Project aims to speed development of cancer-fighting drugs

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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - A project to speed development of cancer-fighting drugs has academic and drug industry researchers collaborating and sharing their findings like never before.
    
The newly created Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy is being funded by a $250 million grant from Sean Parker, the co-founder of Napster and Facebook's first president. It brings together partners at six top academic cancer centers, dozens of drugmakers and other groups.
    
For decades, fiercely competitive and secretive drugmakers have protected their money-making discoveries with patents and lawsuits. And academic researchers often have guarded their work closely until it was published because their promotions, awards and sometimes revenue from licensing patents depended on individual achievement. That's often slowed progress.
    
The new project will have 300 scientists from leading institutions, such as Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Stanford Medicine, share their findings. They'll focus on early research, then drugmakers will fund the much-larger tests needed for drug approval.
    

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