In Development — 2018 Target Launch Date


Fighting Cancer Through Early Detection

“Much of the meager increase in cancer survival rates over the past 30 years can be attributed not to new chemotherapies or treatments but to early detection.” – Thomas Goetz WIRED Magazine

Financial incentives today reward innovations in cancer treatment, not detection. In order to maximize progress in the field of cancer research and catalyze breakthroughs, we need to tackle the problem from every possible angle. Teams will develop a means to accurately, rapidly, and affordably screen for early cancer where intervention can not only decrease human suffering but potentially foster an environment where we can truly conquer cancer.

Targets cancers – detectable and treatable

  • Breast Cancer – 99% 5-year survival rate if caught and treated early
  • Lung Cancer – 60% detected after disease has spread; 5% survival if detected late, 55%-75% survival if caught early
  • Colorectal Cancer – If everyone over 50 had regular screening > 60% of deaths could be prevented
  • Melanoma – 1% of skin cancer diagnoses, 75% of skin cancer deaths; 5-year survival 98% if caught early, 17% if caught after metastasis
  • Ovarian Cancer – Early diagnosis = 92% 5-year survival, but only 15% are caught early
  • Pancreatic Cancer – Highest mortality rate of all major cancers, 80% have inoperable tumors when diagnosed

The prize will address market failures of siloed ecosystems, regulatory complexity, misaligned incentive sand barriers to entry for new ideas.

Deloitte funded, staffed, and led a team to design the prize concept as part of XPRIZE’s Visioneers Summit in September 2016. A group of 250 mentors composed of prominent corporate and political leaders, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, artists, technologists and scientists evaluated the concept for a Cancer XPRIZE, among nine total XPRIZE proposals tackling global challenges, and deemed it “ready for launch.” We are aiming to fund and launch this prize in 2018.

Get Updates on the Cancer XPRIZE


A solution must be sensitive to detect cancer early enough for effective intervention, yet specific to avoid over-diagnosis.


Reducing or eliminating the time between a test being conducted and the delivery of its results is key to addressing disparities in cancer screening.


Significantly reducing the cost of cancer screening is key to making it more available.