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The 21st Century Cures ACT Movement

By Kevin Hrusovsky, CEO And Executive Chairman, Quanterix

Thanks to recent moves by Congress last week, we’re one step closer to transforming the way in which we approach today’s sick care to true, precision healthcare. The 21st Century Cures Act – which includes funding for President Obama’s precision medicine initiative, the cancer “moonshot” effort and Alzheimer’s research – will promote high-risk, high-reward research using special procurement procedures, rather than through conventional grants and contracts, according to The New York Times. It’s a huge moment in history as these important initiatives receive the necessary funding for new research – and one that will bring us closer to preventing devastating diseases.

Today’s healthcare system is littered with false positives, late stage diagnoses and invasive procedures. According to Cancer.gov, only approximately 25 percent of men who have a prostate biopsy due to an elevated PSA level actually have prostate cancer – a test that’s only inaccurate but also incredibly invasive. We need a way to measure early indicators of disease against a healthy baseline to detect disease at its first, not last, stages in a much less invasive way – through a simple blood test. This Act is paving the way for precision health – which is now more critical than ever – by creating new research models to find cures to deadly diseases and uncovering better, more targeted treatment methods.

At Quanterix, we’re proud to be in the health and biotechnology industry with the passing of this Act, and hope it will speed up regulatory approval processes for our customers by reducing red tape for diagnostic approvals to help fight widespread diseases, like cancer and CTE. We’re excited to be living in an age where, for the first time, enough science and technology exists for a patient to find out if they have a disease at stage zero, or before symptoms are present. We believe that we have the opportunity to reduce the pain and suffering currently being experienced in the world today and eliminate the most deadly diseases – including heart disease, cancer and neurodegenerative disease – through earlier and more accurate disease detection. Our digital Simoa technology provides this ability to closely examine critical biomarkers that were previously undetectable to provide much earlier disease detection, better prognoses and enhanced treatment methods to patients.

Personally, precision health is something I’m incredibly passionate about. This year I founded the Powering Precision Health Summit which brought together the world’s leading physicians, scientists, innovators, investors and patient advocates to unveil and discuss the latest research on new biomarkers that are revolutionizing precision health. The annual Summit is an executive think tank comprised of key industry stakeholders who are brought together to truly transform healthcare. We believe that precision health can be realized by deploying disruptive technologies that enable today’s ‘sick care’ to be transformed into tomorrow’s proactive, personalized and economically viable healthcare. With the passing of this Act, we’ll be even closer to our vision of catalyzing a science-based movement focused on disease prevention, early detection and personalized treatments at next year’s Summit.

This, paired with our company’s passion for unleashing the power of the protein, has inspired leading physicians, researchers, scientists, academics, pharmaceutical executives, medical institutions, disruptive technology companies and major investors from around the world to join in our movement. This Act is one giant step towards progressing the accuracy and timeliness of disease diagnosis and improving treatment options that are more personalized and catered towards individuals. We look forward to being a part of this exciting, and critical, movement.