Study: Cancer cure worth $50 trillion

Apr 05, 2006

University of Chicago economists say finding a cure for cancer would be worth about $50 trillion in social value.

The study by Kevin Murphy and Robert Topel of the university's graduate school of business suggests even a 1 percent reduction in cancer mortality would be worth nearly $500 billion.

Social value of improved health and longevity is the amount in dollars additional life years or other health improvements are worth to people, the report said. The value of improved longevity is based on what individuals gain from the enjoyment of consumption and time during an additional year of life, rather than how much they earn.

"Since the benefits of cancer research are large, substantially greater research expenditures would be worthwhile," Murphy and Topel wrote."

During the 20th century, average life expectancy of Americans increased by 30 years, due in large part to medical advances against major diseases. The authors estimate that increase in life expectancy is worth more than $1.2 million for each American alive today.

The study was presented Tuesday during the annual conference of the American Association for Cancer Research in Washington and is to be published in the Journal of Political Economy.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Deciding on a purchase: Does it matter if you look up or down while shopping?

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

3-D printers to make human body parts? It's happening

Feb 04, 2015

It sounds like something from a science fiction plot: So-called three-dimensional printers are being used to fashion prosthetic arms and hands, jaw bones, spinal-cord implants - and one day perhaps even living human body ...

What exactly is Google's 'cancer nanodetector'?

Nov 11, 2014

Last week, US tech giants Google made a splash in the media, announcing plans to develop new 'disease-detecting magnetic nanoparticles'. This was almost universally welcomed – after all, trying to detect ...

Recommended for you

Professor analyzes role of trade sanctions against Iran

5 hours ago

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed Congress on Tuesday as about 50 Democratic lawmakers threatened to boycott the address, offering the latest and one of the most clear microcosms of the debate about Iran's ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.