• Issue: December 1966
  • Designer: H. Frank
  • Plate no.: 183
  • Method of printing: Photogravure

In our modern scientific age, with all the dramatic advances both in fundamental and applied research, it is natural that the fight against its most dreaded disease, cancer, should progress with ever increasing determination. This fight has itself a two-fold approach - of research and of clinical application. How much the one depends on the other, can only be appreciated when one realizes the complexity of the problem.

Cancer is not one disease but many. Its mode of origin is complicated and its nature very different from most other diseases. Its symptoms are variable, and particularly vague and slight during the early stages of the disease, the time when treatment offers the best chances of a complete cure. These are only some of the many problems that face the investigator.

There are many aspects of the cancer problem that lie outside the realm of diagnosis and treatment. Fundamental research, for instance, at the laboratory level (as carried out in Israel at the Hebrew University Hadassah Medical School in Jerusalem, at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, and in other centers) can be looked upon as a long-term investment, with practical benefits mainly for future generations. Other aspects include health education, particularly important for cancer prevention, detection centers for early cases of cancer among the apparently healthy population, social and other kinds of after-care services of treated cases, etc. (all of which are organized and sponsored by the Israel Cancer Association), as well as the comprehensive collecting of cancer statistics in the country (e.g. the Cancer Registry jointly sponsored by the Ministry of Health and the Israel Cancer Association).

In contrast to the general feeling of despondency among the public because so little headway seems to have been made in finding more reliable cures for the disease, there is a growing sense of sober optimism among the experts, especially regarding the prospects for cancer prevention. Further expansion of research at all levels is justified, since it is the only way of achieving a final break-through.

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Cancer Research