It is estimated that over 50,000 people in North America will be diagnosed with oral cancer in 2018. The need for greater public awareness and education is critical as we lose someone to oral cancer every hour of every day. April is Oral Cancer Awareness month and a Canadian company, Proteocyte AI Inc., is offering a new test that predicts who is at risk to develop oral cancer before they actually have cancer.
“Oral cancer is a disease that is often diagnosed too late with devastating consequences. Patients are often left with facial disfigurement and have difficulties eating and speaking. We believe we can do better. We have to do better,” said John Davis, President and CEO of Proteocyte AI Inc.
Proteocyte AI is focused in the computational pathology sector, combing artificial intelligence and protein biomarkers to determine a patient’s 5-year risk of developing cancer. Straticyte™ is a test that predicts the progression of premalignant lesions to invasive oral cancer. Straticyte provides healthcare professionals with more data, an actual risk score, so that they may further customize patient treatment, potentially improving outcomes for patients at risk for developing cancer, while reassuring those patients who have minimal risk of disease progression.
“We have a test to tell us if the oral lesion is cancer. The challenge is that it’s often too late for patients. What oral surgeons need is a test that can predict if your oral lesion will become cancer,” said Dr. Kevin Lung, Oral Maxillofacial surgeon at Kingsway Oral in Edmonton, Alberta. “The Straticyte test provides that information. I have been using Straticyte for the past 6 months and I believe the test will make a real difference for patients.”
The company is also trying to increase awareness of oral cancer.
“Early detection can make a difference. So spreading the word about oral cancer so people know what to look for, will do self-exams and request annual exams with their healthcare professional is certainly part of the message,” said John Davis.
Proteocyte AI is currently sharing a series of four Oral Cancer Awareness images (see images below) for use in social media platforms and as stickers for healthcare professionals to wear or distribute to patients in their office.
Talk to your healthcare professional if you find an oral lesion in your mouth, or on your tongue, or have questions about oral cancer.