Early detection of cancer saves lives.
The goal of the Cancer Early Detection Advanced Research Center (CEDAR) is to eliminate lethal cancers at the earliest stage, preferably before the lesions can be physically observed.
However, at this time the early detection of cancer cannot differentiate lethal cancers from non-lethal ones, leading to over diagnosis and unnecessary (and sometimes risky) therapies. The biology of the evolution of premalignant diseases to malignant ones is largely unknown. Treatment options of premalignant diseases leading to lethal malignances are very limited.
We believe that the key to resolving these issues and enabling cost effective early cancer detection and treatment is in successfully integrating biological understanding of early disease with the multiple technological approaches currently emerging from research laboratories.
How is CEDAR different?
We know that solving complex problems requires a team that incorporates multiple perspectives. CEDAR's team-based model for scientific research ensures that we can look at problems from different angles and come up with creative solutions to cancer's biggest challenges.
Ideas for CEDAR projects can come from anywhere and anyone, and it is up to the researchers in CEDAR to determine which ideas are strong enough to put forward. Teams develop short proposals for review by the CEDAR project advisory board, a group of OHSU faculty and scientists from diverse disciplines. Proposals that meet high standards for scientific rigor, innovation, the right team, feasibility, and potential impact, move on to an external review board for final vetting.
Science is a dynamic process with a non-linear
path. We expect to learn as much from projects that fail as we do from those
that yield expected results. All CEDAR projects have milestones attached to the
budget and are reviewed every six months by the CEDAR leadership and our
external review panel. The process of consistent review ensures that we are
learning as we go, and when we fail, we can fail quickly and turn our attention
to other more promising ideas—or better yet—redirect projects into a more
fruitful direction by removing roadblocks or providing expertise.