Access Accelerated: improving access to medicines for NCDs
For so long, curing or eliminating any cancer has seemed like nothing more than a pipe dream. But that is starting to change. Advances in our understanding of tumour biology and how they’re triggered, diagnostics and a new era of targeted cancer immunotherapy treatments mean that dream is now starting to become a reality.
当罗杰·班尼斯特打破4分钟一英里的英航rrier in 1954, he achieved what runners had been striving to do since 1886. Just 46 days later his record was beaten and, since then, more than a thousand others have done what for so long had seemed an unconquerable feat.
但that’s the thing about breakthroughs. It takes just one momentous push for the barrier to be breached, for the impossible to become possible and the possibilities to expand and accelerate.
Scientific breakthroughs come from constantly learning and building on what others have done and we are now at a stage in history where our understanding of diseases and how to diagnose, treat and even prevent them has never been greater.
This century has seen a revolution across science, technology, digital, data and genomics which is propelling scientists ever-closer to what has long been a Holy Grail of scientific and medical endeavour - curing cancer. This ever-expanding knowledge has led to a raft of remarkable innovations, tools and treatments which have brought the complete elimination of one form of the disease - cervical cancer - within reach.
“The successful elimination of cervical cancer needs a global approach, and we need to be able to address the entire spectrum of the disease from prevention to detection to treatment.”
“Women are often a key pillar of many families and key contributors to society and cervical cancer often affects them in the prime of their life which is why eliminating this disease is so crucial,” says Dr. Yvonne Lin-Liu, Senior Medical Director, Roche, who is also a practicing board-certified academic gynecologic oncologist in San Francisco.
Cancer can cause a great deal of suffering for those affected and their loved ones. We all need to join forces to prevent this suffering.
这种破坏性疾病声称寿命约为340,0001women globally every year, a death toll made even more shocking because cervical cancer is almost 100% preventable and treatable when detected early. But the fight is on. In November 2020, 194 countries committed to the WHO’s goal of eliminating cervical cancer by implementing a vaccination, screening and targeted treatment strategy which could cut new cases of the disease by 40% and five million related deaths by 2050.2
It is an ambition being supported byWorld Cancer Day 2021under this year’s theme of “Together, all our actions matter” which is shining a spotlight on defeating cervical cancer.
与大多数癌症不同，宫颈癌的主要原因几乎众所周知（99％）3caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) which infects most men and women at some point in their lives. The majority of infections clear on their own but for some women they persist and over time can progress into cervical pre-cancer or cancer.
Over 100 countries4have licensed one or more HPV vaccines, with 74 having it on their national immunization programme for girls, and 11 countries also for boys.5但vaccination alone isn’t enough. Elimination will only come from a comprehensive, triple-intervention strategy of vaccination, advanced screening and diagnostics, and the early treatment of cancerous lesions.
“We want to start with prevention, before we even get to diagnosis. We are seeing a shift from simply treating a disease to trying to detect it early and prevent it from becoming established in the first place.”
但是，近90％6每年的宫颈癌死亡发生在低收入和中等收入国家，医疗保健系统差，女性往往难以进入。这就是罗氏增加的原因HPV screening to its Global Access Program在最需要的地区实施尖端诊断测试和实验室系统。
“A woman dies from cervical cancer every two minutes. That is unacceptable,” says Dr Eslie Dennis, VP, Medical Affairs Roche Tissue Diagnostics. “This is the first cancer that we are so close to being able to eliminate and we have the right tools to make this a reality.”
The Pap test, introduced in the 1940s, revolutionised cervical cancer screening, slashing rates in countries using it by at least 65%. But its limitations mean many cases might be missed. Now, a new era of innovative technologies is transforming cervical cancer diagnostics and early intervention, accelerating the move towards personalised healthcare.
This sophisticated next-generation molecular, cellular, biomarker and tissue-based testing toolbox provides powerful information to healthcare professionals. It is transforming patients’ lives across their entire journey by identifying those with high-risk HPV infection, triaging those with positive HPV tests by identifying cell changes which indicate a higher risk of cervical disease and testing to give an accurate diagnosis of cervical pre-cancer.
由于诊断，药品，数据和演化的强大集成，可以实现消除宫颈癌personalised healthcare. Having all areas of expertise under one roof, Roche is uniquely positioned to follow this holistic approach to support the WHO goal of putting all countries on the path to cervical cancer elimination by 2030.7
但elimination will not be possible if the cancer continues to be diagnosed late or advances, which is why new treatments that can improve outcomes while ensuring an acceptable quality of life for women receiving them must be developed.
The past decade has unlockedthe power of immunotherapy, transforming treatment and patient care across multiple cancer types. A growing understanding of tumour biology and learnings about the cancer immunity cycle has revealed more than one way to harness the immune system.
By identifying where the immune system fails in each patient’s tumour, the right treatment combinations which can provide long-term, transformative benefits to patients can be pinpointed.
We are now at an exciting turning point in history where the potential benefits of combining immunotherapy with chemotherapy, radiotherapy, targeted medicines or other immunotherapies to help restore a person’s damaged immune system to attack their own cancer, are成为现实. These combinations are being explored to see how they can help improve outcomes for people with cervical cancer.
Experts from Roche are also collaborating on theimcore网络, one of the largest networks of industry-academia collaboration focused on accelerating cancer immunotherapy research to find a cure for cancer and transform patient lives.
Roche has partnered with Flatiron Health on one of the largest, most-representative, anonymised clinical data sets now being used by cancer researchers worldwide to accelerate the pace of drug discovery and approval.
该信息爆炸还导致医疗保健中的复杂性令人生意的令人生意的程度，具有越来越多的医疗信息，复杂于治疗决策和疾病管理。但digital decision support toolsare harnessing this powerful data to collate patient information, simplify processes and standardise treatment decisions by oncology care teams.
According to Dr Dennis: “Cancer care is complicated – it requires large, highly trained, multidisciplinary teams to optimally deliver. It is essential to have robust and accurate diagnostics and treatment decision tools to give oncologists confidence in their treatment decisions to get the best possible patient outcomes.”
Eliminating cervical cancer is a medical and societal ambition which cannot be solved in isolation and will need strong collaborations across a wide range of partners to achieve it.
但, just like a world of possibility was opened up by Bannister breaking the four-minute mile, there is hope that eliminating cervical cancer will be the breakthrough which triggers a new era of pursuing elimination of cancer one type at a time.