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Health & Wellness

Researchers Eliminate Cancer in Mice

single-payer-health-care research cancerIncredible gains have been made in reducing cancer deaths in humans, thanks to early detection and treatment, but there remains no viable cure. Wouldn’t it be amazing if one vaccine could wipe out all types of cancer in people? Researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine in California have a good reason to believe this is a serious probability, thanks to their latest progress in cancer studies.

Stanford researchers have discovered a targeted approach to eliminate all traces of cancer in mice. The method involves injecting minute amounts of two immune-stimulating agents into the animal’s solid tumors. According to Ronald Levy, MD, professor of oncology and research leader at Stanford University, “Our approach uses one-time application of very small amounts of two agents to stimulate the immune cells only within the tumor itself. In the mice, we saw amazing, body wide effects, including the elimination of tumors all over the animal.” This method works by re-activating T-cells to attack cancer cells. Human patients with lymphoma, a cancer that begins in infection-fighting cells of the immune system, are now being recruited for clinical trials. [1]

Cancer is a complex group of diseases. It occurs when cells of the body begin to grow out of control and make new cells that crowd out normal ones. Some cancer cells grow quickly and move to other parts of the body. Others grow slowly. Most cancers are commonly treated by surgery, chemotherapy, and/or radiation. Some of these treatments may harm healthy cells. [2] Thus, a targeted approach to eliminating cancer, as demonstrated in this latest discovery, is a major achievement.

Currently, two types of preventative vaccines are used in the United States; one to prevent human papilloma virus, and a second to prevent hepatitis B virus. Additionally, one type of treatment vaccine for metastatic prostate cancer is used. [3] Doctors do not know the exact causes of cancer in many cases, though carcinogens and genetics can play a role. However, this latest development provides incredible hope at fighting cancer. Not only does it attack the tumor, it triggers a full-body defensive response to attack tumors that have spread. [4]

Sources:

[1] https://med.stanford.edu/news/all-news/2018/01/coancer-vaccine-eliminates-tumors-in-mice.html

[2] https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-basics/what-is-cancer.html

[3] https://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatments-and-side-effects/treatment-types/immunotherapy/cancer-vaccines.html

[4] http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-5337727/amp/Human-trials-start-cancer-vaccine.html

 

 

 

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