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How We're Working to Find Cures

The American Cancer Society is the largest nongovernmental funder of cancer research in the United States, having spent more than $4 billion since 1946 to find cures. We fund both external research projects through grants and scholarships as well as conduct our own research into cancer epidemiology, surveillance, and health policy. We fund beginning researchers with cutting-edge ideas early in their careers -- 47 of whom have gone on to win the Nobel Prize, the highest accolade in scientific achievement.

Visit Explore Research and the areas below to learn how the American Cancer Society is working to eliminate cancer as a worldwide health problem and create a world with more birthdays.

Funding Groundbreaking Research

We fund groundbreaking research that helps us understand cancer's causes, determine how best to prevent it, and discover new ways to cure it. The Society’s Research program is composed of 2 main areas: Extramural Grants and the Intramural components of Epidemiology, Surveillance, and Health Policy Research; the Behavioral Research Center; and the Statistics and Evaluation Center. Learn more about our research programs and funding.

Research Accomplishments and Milestones

We've had a hand in nearly every major cancer breakthrough of the last century, including confirming the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer, establishing the link between obesity and multiple cancers, developing drugs to treat leukemia and advanced breast cancer, and showing that mammography is the most effective way to detect breast cancer. Learn more about our research accomplishments.