Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Revolutionary Cancer Treatment

Inside a Revolutionary Cancer Treatment: ABC News
"Researchers Mass-Produced Cells to Destroy an Incurable Skin Cancer...In this experiment, researchers took blood from a melanoma patient who was near death and from that blood extracted a type of cell that's actually programmed by the body to attack cancer, CD4 + T cells..."It's targeted to tumor cells and not to normal cells," Dr. Cassian Yee of the Fred Hutchison Cancer Research Center in Seattle, the lead author of the study, told ABC News. The researchers even isolated which of those cancer-fighting cells were most aggressive against the patient's own melanoma and then, over the next three months, grew a vast, new army of five billion of those particular cells. Finally, the scientists injected the cancer-fighting cells back into the patient...The results were stunning. Before the treatment, the cancer had spread through his lymph nodes. Just two months after treatment, CT and PET scans showed no sign of cancer anywhere in the patient's body. Two years later, the patient still showed no signs of cancer...researchers say the potential of this approach may be much broader. "The use of these cancer-fighting cells can be used to treat other types of cancer, like breast cancer or prostate cancer or lung cancer. Those studies have not been done yet," Yee said.But when it comes to advanced skin cancer, scientists are off to a promising start -- a new weapon against a disease that has been so vexing."

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