6 experts discuss the breakthrough technology that will change the way cancer patients are treated


In the year 2019, there were 23.6 thousand new cancer patients and 10.3 million cancer deaths worldwide that is an increase of 26.3 percent increase in the number of new cases, and an 20.9 percentage increase in deaths when compared to the year 2010.

Additionally, COVID-19 has had devastating impacts on cancer patients as well as a huge number of delayed diagnosis and treatments due to the burden COVID-19 has placed upon health care systems. As the epidemic becomes more commonplace and global communities seek to make changes in their priorities – making sure that there is the highest quality and fair access to cancer diagnostics, treatments and treatment. We believe that the advancements that are part of the 4IR (4IR) can solve some of the biggest problems that humanity faces today.

The World Economic Forum is working together with other partners across the globe to bridge the gap in deaths caused from lung cancer and to harness new technologies to enhance and improve the treatment of cancer in India.

To commemorate World Cancer Day We asked six international innovators and thought leaders from the scientific community, the private and public sectors to discuss their ideas for the future of cancer.

“A world free from fear of cancer’

In his role as Managing Director of Siemens Healthineers, Bernd Montag

Although it can be difficult to accept it’s like cancer is a “hidden pandemic” called cancer is something we have to accept but we shouldn’t accept it as a fact. Like we did with COVID-19 we can come together to combat the ever-growing global health burden. The COVID-19 pandemic is a lesson that we can learn three things:

  • Science is important. The cancer burden in the world is increasing, particularly in LMIC. It is evident that now is the time to start preparing to face the challenges of tomorrow. To combat cancer, we must be able to detect and treat the disease as soon and as precisely as possible. Innovative techniques like low-dose CT that can be used in lung cancer screening programs that are national in scope will help lower mortality rates.
  • Technology is essential. With the rapidly growing evidence of medical care as well as a declining supply of medical experts, technology will help bridge the gap with patients. We’ve had great experiences, including the telemedicine program for COVID-19 patients, and AI-based aids that assist doctors in making their decisions. The lessons learned can be used in the treatment of cancer patients.
  • Healthcare is a team effort. There are oncologists, radiologists surgeons, nurses, the pharma and medtech industries, and a myriad of others who treat cancer patients. Together, we’re working towards ending the fear of cancer and turning it into an incurable chronic disease that is manageable.

Accessibility to precision oncology for patients

Genetron Health Co-founder and CEO, Sizhen Wang

A treatment that is precise oncology can be the ideal alternative to beat cancer. As a basis and the basis for precision medicine genetic sequencing is able detect changes within the human body via the detection of genetic variation and help in the treatment and diagnosis.

Patients and doctors alike require this weapon. They’ll need more reliable and stable medical treatments that have simple, routine operating procedures, less turnaround times, less testing samples, and less cost of treatment. As a company that has been the pioneer in precision oncology, believe that technology-driven innovation will help meet the growing demands of clinical medicine and bring greater advantages to patients by providing more accurate and readily accessible healthcare services in the near future.


The innovative Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) methods help optimize the complete cycle of cancer treatment. These sophisticated sequencing technologies do can not only prolong lifespans but also increase the chances of a cure for patients suffering from cancer by applying to early screening, but in the realm of diagnosis and monitoring they also aid in the creation of personalized medical diagnostics and treatment plans in addition to allowing doctors to pinpoint the development of follow-up cancer patients following the initial treatment. NGS-based platforms are also able to assist in developing cancer-specific drugs and complement diagnostics (CDx) tests and research on the latest cancer treatments.

In the age of technological innovation from genomic to clinical biotech companies like ours can aid in improving the accessibility of precision oncology services in the following three fields: investing in research and development of advanced oncology techniques and services; offering a variety of medical services and products; and launching more public and professional educational programs.

“The adoption of 4IR technologies’

Dr. Palepu Jagannath, Chairman, Department of Surgical Oncology, Lilavati Hospital & Research Center

Around three-quarters of developing world’s population is not able to access to basic cancer treatment. About 66% of those suffering from cancer in middle and low income countries (LMIC) in comparison by less than half of those in high-income nations – die of their illness, according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

The Centre for Fourth Industrial Revolution of the World Economic Forum India has launched The First Cancer Care (FCC) project with the intention of “Transforming the quality of cancer care by harnessing emerging technologies” such as AI machine learning, machine learning, as well as the Internet of Things. There are massive gaps in the infrastructure, skilled human resources and funding, and the experts have identified 18 crucial interventions to improving accessibility to cancer treatment.


  • Telehealth, i.e. expert consultations and virtual tumour boards that help improve medical care.
  • AI-based risk profiling, as well as an opportunistic screening for common cancers performed by healthcare professionals which can lead to the early detection of oral cavity cervical, breast and oral cancer.
  • Innovative ways to screen for breast cancer in the community that complement mammography and breast exams in the clinic.
  • Nursing and non-oncologists receive training as primary care professionals leading to the provision of cancer care in a distributed manner.
  • The remote processing of biopsy samples as well as Telepathology to help improve the diagnosis of cancer.
  • AI-based analysis of chest radiographs to detect lung cancer.
  • Digital health record that maps the patient’s journey with mobile devices and cloud-based information captures to provide care throughout the continuum.

Overall, the use of 4IR technologies to address particular gaps can help improve cancer treatment. These pilot programs can be expanded state-wide as well as nationally and internationally.

The single most powerful influence is detection early’

Cyriac Roeding, CEO, Co-Founder, Earli

In 100 years’ time it’s difficult to imagine back in 2022, we didn’t even know whether there was cancer within our body, or whether it was not. The fact that our bodies weren’t checking for any issues at night, while we were asleep. There weren’t “molecular nanoparticle spies” constantly in our bodies and observing our bodies in order to raise warning signals when they detected an abnormality. Patients were taken home with no treatment after the presence of lesions was detected in their lungs, since nobody could determine whether the lesion was benign or malignant.

Back to 2022. There has been significant advances in the treatment options for cancer over the past decade including immunotherapies and gene therapy. However the biggest factor to save lives is the early detection of cancer. Five-year survival rates for the top five cancers range from between 4 and 13 times more in Stage 1 than Stage 4 based on the kind of cancer.

We need to improve our skills in diagnosing and screening earlier. Three revolutionary innovations are gaining momentum in the field of liquid biopsies, which detect signs of cancer in blood samples AI examines body scans at locations which top imaging specialists aren’t available as well as synthetic biopsies that turn the whole idea of detection completely. Instead of looking for cancer and identifying the cancer, it is made to show, find and ultimately kill itself with synthetic biology.

I’m hopeful that by 2022, we’ll take a look back to 2022 and declare “that is when critical early detection technologies really emerged.”

“There are more cancer cures at hand’

Dr Sheng Ding, Dean and Bayer Distinguished Professor, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Tsinghua University

We’re more optimistic than ever before that many cancers can be treated or controlled in the next 10 years. The advancement of understanding of different cancers is taking place at an incredible rate in resolution, resolution and scale. Thanks to new developments in technology like single cell profiling through sequencing to identify the heterogeneity of cancer as well as precision genome editing through CRISPR to detect and alter cancer-related genes as well as ever-growing scale cancer genomics. These efforts have revealed new targets, mechanisms and strategies to better diagnose cancer earlier, generating new cancer therapies and ultimately, stopping cancer.

Thanks to these advances in science that have led to the discovery of drugs and developing therapies for the treatment of cancer have also stepped into new areas. By harnessing and strengthening the immune system, immunotherapy that employs conventional small molecules or antigens and/or multiplex engineered cells is now providing the curative treatment needed for cancer and a lot of the next-generation immunotherapies are advancing to new readouts and coming to fruition. AI is yet another area to be watched that is beginning to change the process of discovery for drugs.

The near-term future of as biomedical research is expected to bring about more cures for cancer, and researchers continue to discover new avenues to tackle ageing , which is among the top risks for cancer.

“Expand access to screenings”

David Fredrickson, Executive Vice-President, Oncology Business Unit, AstraZeneca

Research has shown that when it comes to treating cancer the earlier we begin to act earlier, the better the outcomes for patients. Before the pandemic and subsequent global declines in the number of deaths from cancer. This was mostly due to improved testing and earlier diagnosis and advancements in treatment methods, such as personalized medical treatment.

The threat of the pandemic is to stop this trend. According to the European Cancer Organisation predicts COVID-19 will cause one million diagnoses that are not made in Europe. In the US Cancer Action Network of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network revealed that more than three quarters of patients who are currently receiving treatment for cancer needed to defer some aspect of their treatment due to the outbreak.

There is hope in the cutting-edge breakthroughs and collaborations among the cancer community around the world to combat the pandemic. As we face the biggest health crisis in the last century and now is the best moment to take action to prevent an outbreak of cancer. In order to do this it is essential to maintain and strengthen the relationships that we have forged, and focus on the resilience and sustainability of our healthcare systems and act on a local scale in order to improve access to screenings.

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