This has been an excellent week for cancer progression, with the results of two studies showing what can be achieved using a relatively new approach called immunotherapy, where you use the power of your immune system to fight cancer.
The good news began last Sunday with a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, which found that every patient on the immunotherapy drug Dostarlimb had lost their cancer.
It hasn’t been heard much, and it has generated worldwide headlines.
The original plan was to give all patients with rectal cancer medicine every three weeks for six months and then follow up with surgery and chemotherapy. Except these other treatments were not necessary because the tumors all disappeared.
Caution Note: This was a special treatment aimed at a small group of people with a particular type of cancer, only 12 of them, with a very specific type of cancer – these patients had a gene deficiency that normally repairs when our DNA is damaged; Having too much damaged DNA increases the risk of cancer.
About 30 years ago, I made a documentary with Dr. Donald Morton of the John Wayne Cancer Institute in Los Angeles about a new type of cancer treatment, immunotherapy. Dr. Morton, the greatest surgeon in life, treated John Wayne (pictured above). He was also a pioneer in tapping into the power of the immune system to destroy cancer
But it does show how far immunotherapy has come – and that, in part, thanks to actor John Wayne, who died of multiple cancers.
A heavy smoker and alcoholic, he shot a film about Genghis Khan in the Nevada desert, a test site for several atomic bomb tests, and was extremely radioactive when the film crew was there.
About 30 years ago, I made a documentary with Dr. Donald Morton of the John Wayne Cancer Institute in Los Angeles about a new type of cancer treatment, immunotherapy.
John Morton was treated by Dr. Morton, the greatest surgeon of his life. He was also a pioneer in tapping into the power of the immune system to destroy cancer.
Back in the 1970s, he developed the first successful immunotherapy treatments against melanoma (a common form of skin cancer), the BCG, a living but weak strain of bacteria called Mycobacterium bovis, commonly used to protect us. Against tuberculosis.
Facing widespread skepticism, in 1974 Dr. Morton published the results of an impressive study of his work with the BCG: 150 patients were given BCG tabs on their tumors and in 90 percent of the cases those tumors disappeared.
Sadly, this was not the treatment he hoped for because, in many cases, the cancer re-emerged.
When I filmed with him, Dr. Morton, who had been running the John Wayne Cancer Institute, was still giving BCG, but now it was mixed with tumor cells taken from patients, weakened and re-injected. It produced good results, albeit with significant relapse rates.
We find that high levels of ultraviolet light in the summer can also suppress your immune system, making it easier to spread existing cancers, writes Dr. Michael Mosley (pictured).
Dr. As Morton discovered, immunotherapy doesn’t always work, or because it works after tumors are destroyed, it’s better to look for ways to mutate the cancer and hide it from our immune system.
From there comes a new generation of immunotherapy drugs like dostarlimb.
Dostarlimab is a monoclonal antibody – a laboratory-made antibody – that binds to a protein called PD-1 on the surface of cancer cells. This helps flag cancer cells as ‘dangerous’, allowing the immune system to swing in and destroy them.
Dostarlimab is currently used in the UK to treat advanced endometrial cancer due to a specific gene defect. But in light of recent discoveries, I imagine they will begin testing it on a range of different cancers.
And this week there was news of another new approach to cancer, using mRNA vaccines, currently protecting us against Covid-19 – but here it is used to treat pancreatic cancer.
The mortality rate of this disease is particularly high, but even in a new study receiving vaccine, about half of the 16 patients remained free of the disease after 18 months.
So how does it work? Scientists take a sample of the patient’s cancer, identify any abnormal proteins, then create a tailor-made vaccine based on those abnormal proteins, which the patient injects again.
The idea is that it stimulates the immune system to create tumor-specific killer T-cells, which detect and destroy tumors and any remaining cancer cells floating around in your system.
Of course, cancer prevention should be our main objective. This means not sleeping in the hot sun in the middle of the day, even if you apply sunscreen, you will still damage your skin.
We are exposed to high levels of ultraviolet light in the summer which can also suppress your immune system, making it easier for existing cancers to spread.
Don’t smoke – if you do, stop. If you are seriously overweight, try to do something about it. After smoking, obesity is the most common cause of cancer in the UK and it significantly increases the risk of breast, intestinal and pancreatic cancer.
And eat lots of fruits and vegetables. You need a wide range of vitamins and minerals to not only protect your cells from cancer-causing damage, but also to keep your immune system in top condition.
As a slow developer I was very short until I left school, when I shot up to 5 feet 11 inches.
Before I grew up, I was a little mad and frustrated by a study that showed taller men were more likely to earn more, have more sex and be more likely to run for president of the United States.
In addition, if you’re a little shorter than average (5 feet 9 inches for men, 5 feet 4 inches for a woman), a recent study found that shorter people are less likely to develop varicose veins, asthma, and leg ulcers.
Metric? Let’s count on 12s!
Boris Johnson’s proposal that we return to the royal scale did not go down well in some quarters – the president of Asda said it was “complete and utter nonsense”.
But I have a definite affection for some of these older measurements and, oddly enough, there are mathematical cases for a dozen systems (i.e. based on number 12) in the decimal system (based on units of 10).
We measure a lot of things in units of 12: a dozen eggs, 12 inch feet, 12 hours a day and 12 months a year (and that was 12 paise in shillings).
We do this because the number 12 is more versatile than 10; For example, it can be divided into several ways (by 2, 3, 4, and 6, compared to only 2 and 5 for 10 numbers).
But the main reason we count in units of 10 is because we have 10 fingers and toes. When I’m happy to lose pounds and ounces, I’m stuck in inches and feet.
I wish I had a more disgusting body odor
I hate mosquitoes, but they love me. My body odor is to blame – it’s not disgusting enough!
Mozzies attract people through our combination of breath and color red.
We emit carbon dioxide, which mosquitoes can detect from a distance of 100 meters.
It opens a guidance system in their eyes which makes them look for anything that looks red or orange. And that, a mosquito means a human being: regardless of our true color, we appear to be large, bright, shiny, and delicious red-orange objects. Why they prefer to bite some people than others, the answer is that they produce less natural insect repellent – my body odor is obviously not rebellious enough to keep socks in the bay.
Mozzies attract people through our combination of breath and color red. We emit carbon dioxide, which mosquitoes can detect from 100 meters away.
Wearing long-sleeved shirts and covering their feet to protect themselves from toxins (they like feet) – and apparently using pesticides – in California, where I am now, they are taking a step forward: later this year they will be ‘self-limiting’ 2.4 billion male mosquitoes. Modifying genes. This means that their offspring will soon die.
The company that does this will only issue modified men who do not bite people (women only bite and carry the disease).
I imagine there are plans to do the same in countries where millions die each year from mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria. I, for one, do not mourn their passing.
Source: | This article is originally from Dailymail.co.uk