It promises to be a game-changer. Scientists in Seattle, WA have developed a therapy using a patient's own immune-boosting cells to fight cancer, and the results are nothing less than miraculous.
Here's how the new therapy works: Unlike chemotherapy, which attacks cancerous tumors directly and can damage healthy tissues in the process, this technique uses each patient's T-cells to fight the disease. First, though, doctors have to genetically modify the cells in a lab to target the specific kind of cancer--and then make sure there are enough of them to do the job. Then the doctors inject the modified T-cells into the patient's body, which gives a person a turbocharged immune system that will only destroy the cancer.
The results have been amazing: 94 percent of the patients suffering from leukemia were symptom-free after the therapy. Eighty percent of those suffering from other blood cancers showed similar results. And there's evidence that one shot of these super-power T-cells could prevent the disease from coming back for at least 14 years.
But before scientists declare the war on cancer over, here are the caveats. The study is in its early stages, and has yet to be looked at by other cancer specialists. The technique was only done on people with leukemia or other forms of blood cancer. And the side-effects of the therapy are serious--and even fatal in two cases.
Still, this is promising route, which could lead to a cure sooner rather than later.
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