New Cancer Treatment
Recently, scientists developed new cancer treatment -vaccine that hopefully will prove to be efficient at destroying tumors where all of the other treatments have not succeeded. At this moment, it is being tested in the U.K. At Guy’s Hospital in London, two people have already been vaccinated, and it is expected that about 30 patients in total are going to participate in the study throughout the following two years.
As it is the case with all the vaccines, the cancer treatment attempts to employ the own immune system of the body to attack and destroy particular entities – which in this case are the cancer cells. Naturally, the different immune system components– including the white blood cells such as T cells – defend against cancer by eliminating the cells, even though some tumors are capable to avoid these natural defenses.
When this happens and cancer advances to a progressive stage, the immune system is frequently repressed. Various factors are considered to be responsible for this outcome, ranging from the ability of the tumor cells to harm immune cells, to a decline in the production of white blood cell once cancer reaches to the bone marrow.
Normally, vaccines function by injecting a patient with small volume of antigens, substances that are able to evoke a response from the immune system, which stimulate the organism to generate antibodies that focus to the labeling and destruction of that specific entity. This ability to create these antibodies is restrained for a certain amount of time, which means that the immune system can then repel upcoming cases of the exact illnesses.
We are all hoping that this vaccine will be best cancer treatment for all patients.
Therefore, the new vaccine that is being tested at this moment is composed of small fragments of an enzyme which is found in the cells of the cancer. It is called human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT), and it regulates the length of the protective caps on chromosomes called telomeres, allowing the cells to divide incessantly. Scientists hope that this will stimulate the immune system of the patient to generate antibodies whose target will be this enzyme, thus making the destruction of the cancer cells possible, scientists are hoping that this will be best cancer treatment.
In order to initiate the process, the vaccine is combined with small doses of chemotherapy which will help to destroy some of the tumor cells and stimulate the immune system. The research team believes that the vaccine will be effective for all kinds of solid tumors. Therefore, they are testing the safety and effectiveness of the cancer treatment patients diagnosed with terminal cancer.