Major Milestones Against Cancer

ASCO’s Cancer Progress Timeline is an interactive, data-rich resource that provides an historical overview of major advances in cancer that have led to better outcomes and quality of life for patients. More than 400 milestones spanning 170 years are chronicled in the Timeline—from the advent of general anesthesia opening the door for cancer surgery in the mid-1800s to the first gene therapy for cancer approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2017.

The Timeline highlights some of the most important advances across cancer care and research. Many of these milestones were supported by federal research funding, and nearly all of them are the result of rigorously conducted clinical trials, made possible by the participation of thousands of individuals with cancer. ASCO’s federally funded research badge is featured on milestones that stemmed from research funded at least in part by the National Cancer Institute or other federal agencies.

The timeline can be filtered by major milestones in common cancers and type of care:

View the Timeline.