About half of all cancers, if you catch them early enough, can be treated with chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery. The other 50% are likely going to kill you.
Despite a four-decade war against cancer and over $150 billion in research investment worldwide, five-year survival rates are virtually unchanged from 20 years ago in most types of diagnosed cancer. In 2014, an estimated 8 000 000 people died from cancer. By 2030, cancer is expected to surpass diseases of the heart to become the leading cause of death. If we do not find a breakthrough first.
Immunotherapy, also called Immuno-Oncology, is the first such breakthrough in recent memory that doesn’t just offer some incremental three to six months’ average life extension. It promises the possibility to beat cancer.
Immunotherapy harnesses the body’s own immune system and mobilizes its disease-fighting abilities to attack cancer cells. Cancer cells are adept at “hiding” from the body’s disease-fighting immune system, allowing it to elude detection. Immunotherapies are able to overcome those evasive strategies by either turning off the immune system’s brakes - through so-called “checkpoint inhibitor” drugs — so it can work in overdrive to attack the cancer cells or by rejiggering the body’s T-cells to specifically recognize cancer cells.
Immunotherapy represents a fundamentally new, breakthrough treatment paradigm in the fight against cancer. And Scandinavia is at the forefront in this fight.
This is a presentation of five geographical concentrations of Scandinavian cancer research, five areas on the absolute forefront. We also present a selection of companies to keep your eyes on.
The global market for cancer treatment is currently worth 95 BUSD yearly and is expected to grow to 163 BUSD by 2020 according to Cowen.