Wednesday, 08 November 2017 00:00

Suicide Molecule Could Be Key to Battling Cancer

As researchers work hard to find a cure for cancer, the best solution may be to cause cancer cells to self-destruct. Working with this concept, a team at Northwestern University believe RNA molecules they’ve dubbed “suicide molecules” are the key to battling cancerous tumors.

The molecules were originally developed to study gene function, but researchers found that when injected into a cancer cell, they trigger an ancient kill switch that prevents the disease from developing. The lead study author has been searching for molecules that provided this function for years.

Published in Our Blog
Saturday, 07 October 2017 00:00

T-Cell Therapy Could Be Key to Battling Cancer

In late August, the FDA approved tisagenlecleucel for treatment in relapsed or refractory B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia. The approval was specific to children and young adults, but it’s considered an important first step in the eventual use of this type of therapy in other cancer incidents.

Also known as CAR T-Cell therapy, this treatment involves removing T cells from a patient and genetically modifying them so that when re-implanted, they attack B cells. The treatment attacks all B cells, not just the cancerous ones, but it is an improvement over traditional therapy for this type of leukemia. Currently, patients with B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia undergo some combination of radiation, chemotherapy, targeted therapy, or a stem cell transplant, with long-term success rates extremely poor.

Published in Our Blog
Friday, 29 September 2017 00:00

Zika Virus Could Treat Brain Cancer

Until recently, the medical community has only seen the Zika virus as something to fear. Transmitted through mosquito bites and intercourse, the disease has affected people across the globe since it was first identified in 1947. In addition to risk of illness and death, it also puts pregnant women in danger, causing fetal birth defects like microcephaly.

But new research shows that Zika could actually save lives. A team from the University of California, San Diego found that the virus kills brain cancer cells without affecting the normal brain cells around them.

Published in Our Blog
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