Research devising more effective treatments for all types of cancer has been abundant over the past few years, offering new hope all the time.
The latest study, from Stanford University School of Medicine in California, has investigated the potential of yet another approach: injecting “minute” amounts of two agents that stimulate the body’s immune response directly into a malignant solid tumor.
So far, their studies using mice have proven successful. “When we use these two agents together,” explains senior study author Dr. Ronald Levy, “we see the elimination of tumors all over the body.”
“This approach bypasses the need to identify tumor-specific immune targets and doesn’t require wholesale activation of the immune system or customization of a patient’s immune cells.”
Dr. Ronald Levy
Moreover, the researchers have reason to believe in a speedier trajectory toward clinical trials for this method, since one of the agents involved has already been approved for use in human therapy, while the other is already under clinical trial for lymphoma treatment.
The study’s findings were published yesterday in the journal Science Translational Medicine.
‘One-time application’ of formula
Dr. Levy specializes in the use of immunotherapy — which is a type of treatment wherein the body’s immune response is enhanced so that it can target cancer cells — to fight lymphoma, or cancer of the lymphatic system.
There are several types of immunotherapy, including some that boost the entire immune system of the body and others that are a lot more targeted. But, the researchers note, they all come with caveats attached.
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