Hadassah-University Medical Center in Jerusalem has signed a first-of-its-kind collaboration agreement with the pharmaceutical company Roche-Israel to promote personalized cancer treatment based on genomic profiling for cancer patients.
Genomic profiling is a medical method designed to increase understanding of genetic information connected to a specific individual or cell type and how their respective genes interact with the environment.
Prof. Yoram Weiss, director-general of the Hadassah Medical Organization, believes the new method will offer patients a more precise and timely cancer diagnosis.
“Implementing the integrated model will allow us to provide patients with the most advanced and innovative diagnostic tests for cancer,” Weiss stated, noting that the cooperation would enhance Hadassah's position as a leading global player in cancer care.
“This collaboration is the result of concerted work by our teams to establish a unique model that positions Hadassah at the forefront of personalized cancer care in Israel and worldwide. Genomic testing for each patient will allow us to understand the molecular characteristics of the tumor and provide the most precise treatment available, among the treatments available in Israel and within the clinical trial framework, leading to the best possible outcomes.”
Weiss also noted that the new cancer care method would facilitate the ongoing integration of artificial intelligence within medical care. “It will also make it possible for us to develop more AI-based tools to enhance patient care.”
Avi Danziger who heads the Israeli office of the Swiss Roche medical company, said that the collaborative effort would offer both clinical benefits and research advantages, adding that, "this partnership will significantly advance scientific and research aspects of cancer management, potentially leading to further collaborative efforts that stem from this important milestone.”
Prof. Aharon Popovtzer, director of Hadassah’s Sharett Institute of Oncology, believes genomic profiling will improve the quality of cancer treatment.
“We are proud to provide cancer patients with the best molecular characterization and are convinced that it will immediately lead to an improvement in the quality for many patients,” Popovtzer said.
Cancer affects millions of people worldwide. In 2020, there were approximately 18 million new cancer patients globally, according to the World Cancer Research Fund. In 2021, there were some 1.9 million newly diagnosed cancer cases in the United States alone. During the same year, more than 600,000 U.S. patients died from cancer-related diseases, according to the American Cancer Society.
While Israel is a comparatively small country, it nevertheless contributes disproportionately to cancer-related issues and treatment worldwide.
In March, Israeli researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem announced a potential treatment for pancreatic cancer, one of the most lethal forms of cancer, responsible for about 7% of all cancer-related deaths worldwide.
Skin cancer is another serious disease that is particularly prevalent in countries and regions with plenty of sunshine. In June, Israeli researchers from Tel Aviv University and Sheba Medical Center announced a “breakthrough” in treating skin cancer-related diseases.
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.