Posted on: March 4, 2020
There is no doubt about how amazing our body’s immune system is in attacking invading bacteria and viruses and restoring us to health following an illness, but the current discoveries from researchers at Cardiff University are set to generate a new and unanticipated advancement: halting cancer in its tracks.
Researchers uncovered a particular kind of immune cell, a T-cell, situated in our blood, which is able to scan and destroy threats – including a wide array of cancer cells: kidney, prostate, colon, lung, breast, ovarian, cervical, blood, and many more. And astoundingly, all normal tissue is left untouched.
The discovered T-cell works closely with a particular molecule located on the surface of each cell throughout our body, referred to as the MR1 molecule. The hypothesis is that the MR1 is notifying the T-cell of any cancer cell deformations. Garry Dolton, who was an important part of the research team, explains, “We are the first to describe a T-cell that finds MR1 in cancer cells – that hasn’t been done before; this is the first of its kind.”
While there is currently an equivalent type of therapy, called CAR-T, which has shown impressive results in bringing patients from a terminal status to complete remission, it is only shown to be effective in some types of cancer, and not “solid cancers” (those that form tumors). This brand new breakthrough in cancer treatment options has been shown so far to impact all types of cancer. Here’s how it’s projected to work:
- Blood is taken from a patient diagnosed with cancer.
- The blood is filtered to take out T-cells.
- A particular type of innocuous virus is injected into the T-cells, allowing them to pick up on cancer cells.
- These cells are then duplicated in a lab, and inserted back into the patient.
Studies have been remarkably effective in animal trials, and with further safety checks, the next step is going to be human trials. As outlined by Daniel Davis, professor of immunology at the University of Manchester, “There is no question that it’s a very exciting discovery, both for advancing our basic knowledge about the immune system and for the possibility of future new medicines.”
As we keep an eye out for more info on this particular advancement, you can rely upon Alivity Care Advocates to help you find top-quality care for individuals diagnosed with cancer and various other health conditions.
Take the initial step to a greater quality of life for a senior you love. Contact us at (248) 375-9125 to speak with one of our highly qualified care advocacy experts and let us help you by providing reliable information and resources for your caregiving journey.