What better adversary to the scourge of the deadly disease of cancer than another deadly disease…HIV.
“What we’ve learned how to do is train the immune system to recognise and kill tumor cells” describes Dr. Carl H. June of the University of Pennsylvania. And that tutor is the HIV virus. Genetically modified so as not to infect the patient with HIV. Not too far of a mental leap from basic immunization which injects people with the disease it wishes to make you immune to only this procedure is about a thousand times more complex.
And, it is the also failure of treatment that is actually enabling these breakthrough innovations. As such an approach is so risky, that at this stage they can’t be justified for use on any patients who might have a higher chance of better outcomes with other therapies available.
- “Patients that we are treating in this clinical trial are patients who have absolutely no other options left for them. These are patients who are unfortunately destined to die of their disease and in a fairly short amount of time.”
Fortunately, for all of us but especially patients like Emma showcased in the video, these radical approaches have worked advancing our knowledge of how to refine them and progress them taking us ever closer to a cure for cancer.