Friday, November 27, 2015

Injectable Biogel Delivers Anti-Cancer Agents To Tumors

Cancer Research


Smart Treatment: Paddock writes: “The aim of the smart biogel is to act as a cellular reservoir of immune cells that can be injected into tumors to eliminate the cancer.”
Photo Credit & Source: Medical News Today

An article, by Catharine Paddock, in Medical News Today says that researchers at the e University of Montreal Hospital Research Centre (CRCHUM) in Montreal, Quebec, have developed an injectable biogel that allows targeting of anti-cancer agents directly to the tumors.

In “‘Smart biogel’ that kills cancer tumors in development” (November 20, 2015), Paddock writes:
The researchers say the strength of their new biogel is that it is compatible with anti-cancer immune cells. It allows these cells or anti-cancer drugs to be injected directly into the cancer tumor instead of into the bloodstream. Coauthor Réjean Lapointe, an associate professor of medicine, says: “We hope that this targeted approach will improve current immunotherapies.”
Immunotherapy is a relatively new treatment method that enlists the immune system, or parts of it, to fight disease. One form of immunotherapy—called adoptive cell therapy - uses anti-cancer immune cells to treat cancer patients. The aim of adoptive cell therapy is to boost the presence of T lymphocytes, or T cells, in the body. These cells can kill cancer cells, but there are generally not enough of them to eradicate the cancer.
Thus, in adoptive cell therapy, extra T cells are grown in the lab from samples extracted from the patient and then re-injected back into their body to boost their own reserves. However, while the therapy has shown some promising results, it does not always produce enough T cells to kill the cancer completely. Also, it has to be administered with high doses of the hormone interleukin-2, which can be toxic.
Such is the current thinking and approach of cancer research and its therapies, most notably immunotherapy, which focuses on aiding the human body's T-cells to attack cancer. Chemotherapies are still being used as a way to treat cancer; immunotherapy will have to be proven as least as good as this long-standing traditional method before it becomes the method of choice. When this happens, it will be a breakthrough. Chemotherapy, although effective, results in a list of side effects, many unpleasant.

The article, “Chitosan thermogels for local expansion and delivery of tumor-specific T lymphocytes towards enhanced cancer immunotherapies,” is published in Biomaterials: Volume 75, January 2016, Pages 237–249.

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For more, go to [MedNewsToday