01.02.2019 change 01.02.2019

A University of Warsaw company plans to test Polish citizens for the risk of cancer

Photo: Fotolia Photo: Fotolia

Warsaw Genomics, a biotech company of the Warsaw University that carries out innovative genetic research, plans to test all Poles for the risk of cancer. It would be the first such campaign in the world.

Strategic cooperation agreement between Warsaw Genomics and Bank Pekao S.A was announced during the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos. It will enable joint projects, the aim of which is to test as many adults in Poland as possible.

The Warsaw Genomics team, which originates from the University of Warsaw, is led by specialists in the field of oncogenetics: Prof. Krystian Jażdżewski and Dr. Anna Wójcicka.

Prof. Jażdżewski, who presented his concept at the Polish House in Davos, pointed out that the Warsaw Genomics mission was to find all people at particular risk and save them from untimely death. "We want to test all Poles. This is possible thanks to the unique, unusually fast and cheap methodology developed at Warsaw Genomics. We save the lives of five people per every 100 people we test. We hope that the partnership with Bank Pekao will enable us to reach all those in need" - the scientist emphasised.

It is estimated that every third person in Poland will develop cancer, including almost 2 million people born with a pathogenic defect in the gene. Today in Poland, early stage cancer detection rate is very low, which also translates into lower than in Western Europe effectiveness of cancer treatment.

Research carried out by Warsaw Genomics as part of the National Cancer Risk Assessment Program "BadamyGeny.pl" help to define the general risk of cancer and facilitate its early detection and effective treatment. This applies to genetically determined tumors, in particular to breast, ovarian, prostate or pancreatic cancer.

Bank Pekao has launched a genetic research campaign addressed to employees and their families as part of the "BadamyGeny.pl" program. The purpose of tests is assessing the risk of cancer. People with results indicating a higher risk of cancer will be covered with medical care to quickly diagnose possible disease. In the next stage, Bank Pekao plans to expand the scope of cooperation with Warsaw Genomics to include its clients and partners.

"We are pleased to promote such unique and innovative Polish initiatives and achievements of Polish scientists in Davos. We want to support socially important initiatives, which is why we decided to partner with Warsaw Genomics" - said CEO of Bank Pekao SA Michał Krupiński.

The Polish House, where meetings on global trends such as biotechnology are organized, was created on the initiative of PZU and Bank Pekao SA The Polish pavilion located on the main street of the Swiss town was inaugurated by President Andrzej Duda.

CEO of PZU Paweł Surówka emphasised that for the two Polish companies, the Polish House in Davos is "an extremely important undertaking". "We show that our companies have international ambitions, and that is certainly being noticed" - said the CEO of PZU.

The 49th World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, took place in January. It was attended by leaders of world politics, heads of the most important international economic and financial institutions, economists, political scientists, bankers, CEOs of companies and heads of many non-governmental organizations. (PAP)

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