My work in Dr. Bert Vogelstein’s lab focused on the early detection of cancer, a leading cause of deaths worldwide with incidence projected to rise dramatically over the upcoming decades. Most cancer deaths result from tumors that have spread to distant sites. Thus, early detection would allow for the timely initiation of treatment while the tumor is still localized and offers tremendous potential for reducing mortality. We developed sensitive, sequencing-based assays to detect tumor-specific mutations as biomarkers for early disease. These assays have been successfully applied to diagnose various cancer types, such as ovarian and endometrial cancers, in easily collected bodily fluids, such as Pap smear fluid and plasma.