Jeff Huber is best known for helping develop Google’s ad software and it’s maps application. And he’s turning some heads in a positive way, Huber will be the chief executive of “Grail,” a new startup that has raised already $100 million in the last month to help develop a test to detect cancer early(whenever it becomes treatable).
And Jeff Huber wasn’t shy about why he was so passionate about the subject, his wife Laura passed away from colon cancer, leaving behind two children ages 12 and 14 and it certainly isn’t an easy subject to talk about but Huber is determined to get this project rolling, stating:
“That’s a big part of why I’m taking this up,” he stated.
Jeff Huber also joined the board of directors at “Illumina.” They have been focusing on creating dramatic increases in scientists abilities to research and read DNA code. And it’s been speculated that Illumina has looking for new uses for it’s DNA sequencing machines, especially when scientists thought they found clues that could possibly detect cancer early with a simple blood test.
This theory states that since cancer cells shed DNA(as well as RNA), into the blood stream sequencing the DNA not just 30 times but hundreds of thousands of times could possibly help them detect these smaller bits of cancer in the DNA and RNA. But in order for this blood test to work they would need to find combinations of many genetic mutations and it’s probable that they will require much more time and research.
This idea is amazing and could be potentially world-changing. Just think about that? A blood test that could detect many different forms of cancer, EARLY?
Huber didn’t like seeing his wife suffer and he had a lot on his mind regarding the project, stating:
“She’s one story among millions of stories,” Huber stated. “But it is a potentially interesting case study. If GRAIL had existed previously, if it had been available three years ago or four years ago or five years ago when she got her annual physical exam and did a blood test anyway, and if the results had come back then saying that you have early stage cancer, there’s a very good chance that the outcome for her could have been different. She could have had surgery before it spread, or she could have gotten treatment before it evolved and mutated before it became more aggressive.”
While we aren’t sure how this will turn out, it’s pretty neat to see the efforts that are coming about to fight cancer because it really does suck. What do you guys think about the study?