Canadian Cancer Society and Merck partnering to keep public informed on advances in increasingly complex cancer environment

26 May 2016

Toronto -

With the expansion of cancer research into areas such as immunotherapy, genomics and new emerging medicines, the outlook for important advances in treatment has never been more promising. To ensure Canadians continue to have access to accurate information about cancer in such a rapidly evolving and complex world, the Canadian Cancer Society is partnering with Merck Canada Inc. to launch New Horizons in Cancer Research.

Announced at the MaRS Discovery District this morning, Merck, known as MSD outside Canada and the United States confirmed a $1 million contribution to the Canadian Cancer Society to support the creation and roll out of the New Horizons project, designed to become the go-to online source for answers about the latest scientific discoveries in cancer and the implications for prevention, screening and treatment. The partnership also includes sustained support for the Society’s divisions in British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec.

“Today, we are proud to be partnering with the Canadian Cancer Society, a leader in providing Canadians with credible information about cancer,” said Chirfi Guindo, President and Managing Director, Merck Canada Inc. “With the emergence of new targeted therapies for Canadian cancer patients, the information gap is growing and the need for a trusted source is therefore even greater.”

Raising awareness and providing trusted and authoritative information about cancer has always been a core mandate of the Society, with cancer.ca offering definitive and easy to understand resources on all topics. The toll-free Cancer Information Service has answered more than one million questions about cancer since 1996, while also directing patients and caregivers to important support services.

“With Canada’s aging and growing population expected to drive a 40 per cent increase in cancer cases within 15 years, keeping people well informed about prevention and treatment has never been more urgent,” said Anne Vézina, Interim President and CEO, Canadian Cancer Society. “We are grateful to Merck for its generous investment, one that will make a difference in the lives of tens of thousands of Canadians looking for answers.” 

The Society’s research and policy experts will develop information resources across emerging research and technologies, including immunotherapy, genomics, personalized medicine, early diagnosis, genetic testing, clinical trials, and cancer prevention. They will also provide ongoing training to staff at the Cancer Information Service.

“Key breakthroughs in cancer research will rely on multi-faceted advances to characterize the molecular changes within malignant cells, to understand their interactions with the tumor microenvironment, and to harness the potential of the host immune system to target against cancer. The important knowledge gained in each of these areas will provide us with the best chances to fight this disease,” said Lillian L. Siu, MD, Professor of Medicine and Staff Medical Oncologist, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.

About Merck

For 125 years, Merck has been a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well.  Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information about our operations in Canada, visit www.merck.ca and connect with us on YouTube.

About the Canadian Cancer Society

The Canadian Cancer Society is a national, community-based organization of volunteers whose mission is to eradicate cancer and enhance the quality of life of people living with cancer. Thanks to our donors and volunteers, the Society has the most impact, against the most cancers, in the most communities in Canada. For more information, visit cancer.ca or call our toll-free bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1-888-939-3333 (TTY 1-866-786-3934). Make your gift today at cancer.ca.

Forward-Looking Statement of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA

This news release of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA (the “company”) includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of the company’s management and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. There can be no guarantees with respect to pipeline products that the products will receive the necessary regulatory approvals or that they will prove to be commercially successful. If underlying assumptions prove inaccurate or risks or uncertainties materialize, actual results may differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements.

Risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to, general industry conditions and competition; general economic factors, including interest rate and currency exchange rate fluctuations; the impact of pharmaceutical industry regulation and health care legislation in the United States and internationally; global trends toward health care cost containment; technological advances, new products and patents attained by competitors; challenges inherent in new product development, including obtaining regulatory approval; the company’s ability to accurately predict future market conditions; manufacturing difficulties or delays; financial instability of international economies and sovereign risk; dependence on the effectiveness of the company’s patents and other protections for innovative products; and the exposure to litigation, including patent litigation, and/or regulatory actions.

The company undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Additional factors that could cause results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in the company’s 2015 Annual Report on Form 10-K and the company’s other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) available at the SEC’s Internet site (www.sec.gov).

For more information, please contact:

Brooke Kelly

Communications Coordinator

Canadian Cancer Society

National office

Phone: 416-934-5321