A new report has drawn quite a bit of attention with its eye-popping prediction that by as early as 2050 no one under 80 will experience cancer. The claim is tremendous, but the researchers from University College London (UCL) and King’s College London say they have the science to back it up.

In truth, death rates from cancer are a third down from 1996 and are expected to continue to drop. However, according to a report released from the University City London School of Pharmacy, these numbers will nearly disappear for those under 80 in a few decades, thanks to our increasingly effective prevention techniques. Report co-author Dr. David Taylor said healthy habits such as quitting smoking and taking a daily aspirin are helping to wipe out cancer, and 2050 was a “plausible guesstimate” of a time when cancer will only affect those over 80. 

"If we put all these things together ... these killers of children and working-age adults can be overcome," Taylor told The Times in the UK. 

Dr. Jack Cuzick, director of the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine at Queen Mary University in London seemed to agree that advanced preventive measures would seriously change the scope of cancer in Great Britain.

"Taking aspirin daily looks to be the most important single thing we can do to reduce cancer after stopping smoking and reducing obesity, and will probably be much easier to implement," he told The Times. "What makes this a special point in history is that cancers are in the process of becoming either preventable or effectively curable."

Aspirin, while good at keeping cancer at bay, has been tied to increased chances of stomach bleeding. Cuzick says individuals should therefore consult their physician before taking the drug on a daily basis.

Although cancer is becoming far less deadly, a day when nearly no one dies from cancer is not yet here. Cancer prevention can only go so far, and a recent study has suggested that as many as 65 percent of cancer cases come from random genetic mutation that cannot be foreseen or stopped.

"When someone gets cancer, immediately people want to know why," said oncologist Dr. Bert Vogelstein of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, who conducted the study, published in the journal Science, with Johns Hopkins biomathematician Cristian Tomasetti, Medical Daily reported.

"They like to believe there's a reason. And the real reason in many cases is not because you didn't behave well or were exposed to some bad environmental influence. It's just because that person was unlucky. It's losing the lottery."

While many dispute the exact figures of this number, the truth remains that some people get cancer not influenced by lifestyle or genetics.

On top of cancer being hard to predict, it’s also extremely hard to cure. There will most probably never be any one cure to cancer, and while science has become quite successful in treating some forms of cancer, such as skin cancer, for other forms of cancer, effective treatment remains elusive. One of the reasons for this is the unpredictable nature of the cancer cells. As reported by LiveScience, the cancer cells constantly change their DNA, which means that a method may only be able to prove effective on some cancerous cells. Cancer is also able to hide, rearing its ugly head years later.

Source: Gill J, Sullivan R, Taylor D. Overcoming Cancer In The 21st Century. UCL School Of Pharmacy. 2015.