Developing risk-assessment processes, diagnostics and monitoring guidelines to identify pre-cancer in the earliest stages and intercept with a spectrum of precision solutions, the Oral Cavity & Oropharyngeal Cancer/Cervical Cancer Venture team is working to intervene at just the right moment to stop these diseases before they start. The team is currently exploring the development of a vaccine to intercept these cancers.
“Globally, oral cavity, oropharyngeal and cervical cancers present unique interception opportunities. In oral cancer, mortality rates are particularly high due to the advanced stages at which individuals seek medical attention. We are working to screen for signals and then hope to provide solutions to shut down progression of these devastating diseases.”
Gert Scheper, Ph.D.
Venture Leader, Oral Cavity & Oropharyngeal Cancer/Cervical Cancer
Disease Interception Accelerator
Oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancers, together, constituted the sixth most common cancer worldwide in 2009, with an estimated 500,000 cases around the globe.6 In the United States alone, more than 45,000 individuals are likely to be diagnosed with the condition this year and only slightly more than half will be alive in five years.7 Treatment for these conditions can include a combination of radiation therapy, surgery and chemotherapy and, in advanced stages, may result in disfigurement.8 In addition, cervical cancer was the fourth most commonly diagnosed cancer in women in 2012, with an estimated 527,600 new cases worldwide.9
7 The Oral Cancer Foundation. Oral Cancer Facts. http://www.oralcancerfoundation.org/facts/. Accessed November 2015.
8 The Oral Cancer Foundation. Treatment. http://www.oralcancerfoundation.org/treatment/. Accessed November 2015.
9 American Cancer Society. Global Facts & Figures 3rd Edition. http://www.cancer.org/acs/groups/content/@research/documents/document/acspc-044738.pdf. Accessed January 2016.