It is unfortunate that we often hear about someone who goes to their doctor with what seems like an innocuous symptom only to be diagnosed with a advanced stage cancer. This is all too common because many cancers present without obvious symptoms until they progress into the later stages of development and become difficult or impossible to effectively treat. However, early detection can be key to better treatment outcomes and long-term survival.
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the world, responsible for 14 million new cases in 2012 and 8.8 million deaths in 2015. However, early Detection of many cancers through screening drastically improves survival. In lung cancer, the #1 cancer killer, the 5-year survival rate for screen detected Stage 1 is better than 90% vs, less than 10% for Stage 4 when it is most commonly first diagnosed. The global cancer diagnostics market was valued at $7.1 billion in 2015 and is projected to reach $13.1 billion by the year 2020, increasing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.9% during this period.
To accomplish our mission of improving cancer outcomes through early detection we develop and commercialize blood tests using innovative, proprietary, but reliable scientific methods. 20/20’s cancer tests measure and track the levels of protein “biomarkers” in the blood which tend to increase as tumors grow and spread. Importantly, the machines and biochemicals we use to measure these biomarkers are the same ones widely used by thousands of top tier medical testing laboratories worldwide thereby enhancing reliability and affordability through economies of scale. Furthermore, this permits us to capture data from thousands of others similarly tested and then follow-up to assess their health history one year after the test. This data is then used to build machine learning algorithms that have been demonstrated by 20/20 and our collaborators to improve diagnostic accuracy over biomarker testing alone. We believe we are the first company to utilize this technical approach.