CancerHacker Lab™ supports activist patients and startups with “hackathons” – crowds that come together to solve complex problems.

Patients with Complex Problems

We invite a global, cross-discipline and cross-institutional crowd of patients, researchers, providers, pathologists, and bioinformaticians to “hackathons”, where the complex cases of individual patients are analyzed, and their best next treatment is determined.

Startups Addressing Cancer Patient Challenges

We invite experts and facilitate conversations on the top issues that the startup is facing, e.g., funding, business model, organization, legal status, in regards to addressing cancer patient challenges in education, navigation, and community.

Participate in Our current Hackathons

Curated online communities of brilliant patients, researchers, and bioinformaticians joining together to solve each patient’s unique problem

Stay tuned for Hackathon launch announcements

For ovarian cancer patient Shirley Pepke

Shirley Pepke photo
And for patients exploring a deep analysis of their metastatic prostate cancer
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Why Hackathons

Patients and their families are overwhelmed.

An explosion of new treatment options and health data about each individual (genomics, proteomics, imaging, monitors, new biomarkers, increased frequency of sensor readings) is overwhelming oncologists and patients. Patients and their friends and family feel lost and despondent.

Impersonal Care

Batch thinking and rigorous adherence to a safe standard of care optimizes for the population but can be suboptimal for an individual patient.


Separate services are hard to integrate, and competing incentives (profit, cost, safety) are often at odds with the patient outcomes. Data is hoarded and local.

Incumbents (providers, payers, pharmaceutical companies) have a culture and incentives that put a premium on safety, which is important, but their pace of change is too slow for patients needing innovation.

Activist patients

Some proportion of the million plus people diagnosed each year with cancer are smart and sophisticated and will leave no stone unturned to access their best treatment options, paving the way for others to follow.


Thousands of entrepreneurs are launching startups to fix the breakdowns that cancer patient experience in the health system and to disrupt the status quo.

Make a difference

Help solve the breakdowns that patients experience.


Run experiments and have conversations with diverse experts.


Meet diverse leaders and demonstrate your expertise

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Find new treatment options.


Discover the best treatment among the options.


Learn from the experts in diverse domains 

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Takeaways from Previous Hackathons

Recent Articles

Unhappy News: Linnea Olson has passed

I’m sorry to report that Linnea Olson died on November 15, 2021.   I’m sending this message to you and the roughly 100 people who