The term ‘Cancer Moonshot 2020’ sounds definitely like one of the most intriguing and ambitious mission statement you would have heard since the Lunar mission maybe. It is the United States most comprehensive cancer care initiative with the ambitious goal of creating a cancer vaccine by 2020. Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, Founder and CEO of NantHealth,Inc, a leading next-generation, evidence-based, personalized healthcare company is spearheading humanity’s most ambitious mission- personalized immunotherapy as the standard care for cancer patients.
In simple terms, it is all about harnessing the power of our own immune system to fight cancer as it would fight off other ailments. It is about nudging our immune system, warning it from getting tricked by cancer cells and to make it destroy cancer cells just as it would destroy other foreign bodies.
The personalized treatment kicks off with a cutting edge preliminary testing known as GPS(Genomic Proteomic Spectrometry) Cancer test that measures the protein present in a person’s tumor against other tumor and normal samples. GPS cancer is the most comprehensive molecular profiling solution of a patient’s tumor tissue. Within 21 days of receiving a patient’s tissue, the physician has an insight into critical information such as how the patient may respond to chemotherapies, immunotherapies and what are the chances of resistance due to a particular drug etc even before the treatment begins. The results from the GPS Cancer test can be accessed through an smartphone app known as GPS Cancer Genome Browser in a easy to read format so that there is no need for any special training to interpret lab test reports.
GPS Cancer essentially sequences the whole genome of 20,000+ genes and 3 billion base pairs and matches it against the patient’s normal DNA, thus enabling physicians a view of the alterations that have occurred in order to design a treatment plan specifically for that patient.
Also published on Medium.