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waveOver 340 people worldwide have joined WaveCheck‘s Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign to fund a breakthrough clinical technique for breast cancer that promises to revolutionize the way chemotherapy is monitored.

“Breast Cancer Awareness Month’s positivity makes it easy to overlook the fact that 60 to 70 per cent of chemotherapy treatments fail,” says Dr. Gregory Czarnota, chief of Radiation Oncology at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and co-inventor of WaveCheck with Professor Michael C. Kolios of Ryerson University. “WaveCheck’s technology can tell people with breast cancer and their doctors if a particular chemotherapy is working in as little as four weeks.”

WaveCheck’s campaign made the Top 10 list for the most financially successful Canadian crowdfunding campaigns on both Kickstarter and Indiegogo in Globe and Mail’s Report on Small Business. CTV News Channel, CBC Toronto News (see the above clip), CBC Radio Canada and Canadian Healthcare Technology have also covered the project, along with Oshawa Today (radio), The Ryersonian and The Eyeopener.

Currently, breast cancer patients complete an entire chemotherapy course without knowing whether the specific drug is successfully targeting and destroying tumour tissue. WaveCheck can allow doctors and people with breast cancer to know far sooner, and with greater accuracy, whether an individual breast tumour is responding to a specific chemotherapy treatment.

Better still, WaveCheck can provide this insight within four weeks, allowing women with breast cancer to know if their treatment is working at the start, not the end, of treatment.

Over $41,000 of the $96,987 required to launch the first partner test site in January 2014 has already been raised, which will cut at least two years off WaveCheck’s development path to the clinic.

There are 22 days left in the online Indiegogo campaign, which launched on October 9 and runs until November 27, 2013.

WaveCheck was invented by Dr. Gregory Czarnota of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and Professor Michael C. Kolios of Ryerson University.

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WaveCheck software attaches to traditional ultrasound machines. If the results are yellow, the tumour is responding to chemotherapy treatment. If the results are red, chemotherapy is not working.

To celebrate the success of the campaign, the WaveCheck team ran a referral contest that successfully drew over 1,000 referrals to the campaign. Prizes included tickets to last weekend’s Bon Jovi concert and a Stella & Dot gift card. The tickets were generously donated by Torys LLP;

Celebrity support also continues to climb, with Twitter retweets coming  from Canada AM co-host Jeff Hutcheson, British singer-songwriter Donna Lewis and Canadian figure skating campion and judge on CBC’s Battle of the Blades Jamie Salè.

Eight pieces of art generously donated by international and Canadian artists, many of whom are affiliated with the Women’s Art Association of Canada, have already been  claimed through donations to the campaign.

For more information on WaveCheck’s technology, visit the Indiegogo campaign, MaRS Innovation technology profile or WaveCheck website.

Posted by Kailee Travis, writer and communications assistant.  

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