“We are losing the battle against cancer” says Dr. Michael Har-Noy, founder and CEO of Immunovative Therapies, a biotech company started in Israel in 2004. Dr. Michael Har-Noy goes on to say that in past few decades, the incidence of cancer has grown to epidemic proportions, affecting almost one out of every two males and one out of every three females. This means that the current incidence of cancer is 50% greater in men and 25% greater in women than in the previous generation. The National Cancer Institute predicts that, because of our aging population, the number of cancer cases will almost double by the year 2050.
Dr. Michael Har-Noy indicates that despite decades of research and clinical trials, improvement in overall mortality from cancer has been minimal, and observed reductions in death are primarily due to a decrease in lung cancer deaths secondary to reduced smoking in males, and not from actual advances in cancer therapy. Furthermore, the overall five-year survival rate for all cancers is virtually the same as it was in 1970; about 50% for all cases combined.
Conventional treatment of cancer has devastating emotional and physical effects and many patients feel that the treatment is worse than the disease. The financial burden placed on society for treating cancer is also astronomical. The estimated direct annual cost of cancer treatment has more than quadrupled over the past 20 years. It has grown from $18 billion in 1985 to $41 billion in 1995 to a staggering $80 billion in 2005. Also, indirect costs from loss of wages, taxes, and overall productivity secondary to cancer were estimated at $100 billion in 1999.
At Immunovative Therapies, Ltd., Dr. Michael Har-Noy is developing unique biologic compounds that stimulate one's own immune system to kill cancer cells. Preliminary results of a Phase I/II trial show remarkable efficacy of these compounds across a wide range of cancers. Definitive randomized Phase II/III trials of these drugs are pending.