Photo by Theresa Naujack
Officials from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC) and the Hutchinson Center formalized an ongoing relationship by signing a memorandum of understanding during a ceremony at the Center on Oct. 28. The signing by Dr. Yu Wang, China CDC director general, and Dr. Larry Corey, incoming Center president and director, marks the first such agreement between the China CDC and a U.S. cancer research center.
The agreement provides a framework for scientific research and training projects that support and contribute to the prevention, early detection, diagnosis and treatment of cancer, infectious diseases and other related health concerns in China and the United States.
“The prevention and early detection of tumors and related infectious diseases, as an important strategy for promoting health and extending a healthy lifespan, are the shared priorities of both the China CDC and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center,” said Wang, who led a delegation from China that spent three days at the Center attending a series of science symposia conducted by researchers from both institutions.
“This is a groundbreaking agreement that provides a unique research collaboration in a wide area of global health problems in both infectious diseases and cancer,” Corey said. “The ability to link Hutchinson Center scientists and programs with the China CDC’s national database and scientific programs will provide major advantages both to the U.S. and Chinese research communities.”
Center and University of Washington faculty have worked with Chinese health authorities since 2003 on collaborative HIV/AIDS projects, including vaccine clinical trials and research on a small population of HIV-infected persons known as “HIV controllers.” These are patients whose long-term infections never progress to AIDS despite their not taking anti-retroviral medications.
In 2009, a group of Center and UW statisticians and researchers helped the China CDC analyze an outbreak of a novel and potentially deadly strain of hand, foot and mouth disease called EV71. This collaboration laid the foundations for the expansion and consolidation of a formal partnership.