The National Cancer Institute recently released a report that 40% of women and men in the United States will receive a cancer diagnosis at some point in their lives. One person that is trying to cure cancer is Dr. Clay Siegall of Seattle Genetics. He is the co-founder and chief executive officer of this company and has dedicated his career to providing cures for cancer.
Clay Siegall’s company uses antibody-based therapies in order to develop cancer drugs. The first cancer drug they released onto the market was Adcetris. This drug treats lymphoma which is a cancer that occurs in white blood cells. A person with lymphoma has their immune system compromised due to this. There are two forms of lymphoma that Adcetris treats. The first is Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Around 8,000 people are diagnosed with this each year, mostly young people. The other version is non-Hodgkins lymphoma which mostly affects elderly people and 70,000 are diagnosed with this each year.
Dr. Siegall and his team of researchers at Seattle Genetics have other cancer drugs they are working on to treat other forms of cancer. This includes myeloid leukemia, bladder cancer, breast cancer, and others. Other companies are also developing dr
ugs to irradicate cancer as well. In just one recent year 20 cancer treatments were approved by the Food and Drug Administration, for example.
Before founding Seattle Genetics in 1998, Dr. Clay Siegall worked for both the federal government and Bristol-Myers Squibb as a cancer researcher. He was with the National Care Institute first and performed research there for three years. He then moved to the Seattle area and joined the Pharmaceutical Research Institute that is operated by Bristol-Myers Squibb. After six years he decided that he would rather start his own company in the oncology biotechnology industry so that he would have more freedom.
Dr. Clay Siegall says that the new cancer drugs that are coming out are going to completely replace conventional cancer treatment. The old way of performing things like radiation therapy and chemotherapy are very destructive for the patient. He says the new cancer drugs just target cancer cells only making them much safer and more effective.