Nearly 1.8 million people globally die of lung cancer each year, more than the second and third most deadly cancers combined (colorectal and stomach cancer, respectively) because it is often detected and treated too late. Dr. Avrum “Avi” Spira, MD, MSc, Global Head of the Lung Cancer Initiative (LCI) at Johnson & Johnson, a renowned pulmonologist and lung cancer researcher, wants to make lung cancer a disease of the past. He discusses why early detection with lung cancer is key, what recent advancements in imaging, robotics and artificial intelligence have unlocked in new ways to screen for and access cancer, and how LCI is working to develop solutions to prevent, intercept and cure lung cancer.
Avrum “Avi” Spira, MD, MSC, is the Global Head of the Lung Cancer Initiative (LCI) at Johnson & Johnson, which is developing solutions to prevent, intercept and cure lung cancer. Practicing medicine for more than 20 years, Dr. Spira leads a team of dedicated industry leaders and medical professionals focused on developing novel technologies and approaches that support earlier lung cancer detection and treatment.
In addition to leading the Lung Cancer Initiative at Johnson & Johnson, Dr. Spira is an attending physician in the Medical Intensive Care Unit at Boston University-Boston Medical Center (BMC) and is a Professor of Medicine, Bioinformatics and Pathology at Boston University. He also serves as the Alexander Graham Bell Professor in Health Care Entrepreneurship at Boston University. Prior to joining Johnson & Johnson, he was the Director of the Boston University-BMC Cancer Center, and was the founding Chief of the Division of Computational Biomedicine at Boston University.