Metastasis is the process by which tumors spread to different parts of the body, making cancer even more difficult to treat. Researchers in the United Kingdom recently made an exciting discovery about how metastasis occurs, which holds promise for developing a cure.
Investigating the Science behind Metastasis
Up to 90 percent of cancer deaths are a result of metastasis. Unfortunately, scientists were unable to get a clear understanding of how cancer cells travel to other parts of the body.
Last year a team at the UK’s Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute conducted a study of how tumors spread in genetically engineered mice. After screening for 810 genes, they were able to identify 23 that either positively or negatively affected the spread of skin cancer to the lungs.
The most effective change came upon removing the Spns2 gene. After finding that metastasis to the lungs was reduced by approximately four times, the researchers repeated the procedure with breast, colon and lung cancers with similar results.
Positive Implications for Immunotherapy Research
This discovery is particularly relevant for the continuing development of immunotherapy for cancer. Scientists already knew that the Spns2 gene affects the immune system, but they had no idea it was a factor in metastasis. They found that the mice in the study that lacked the Spns2 gene had a ratio of immune cells that varied from the normal amount.
Immunotherapy for Cancer and Tumor Metastasis
Our integrative immunotherapy treatments have been used successfully on patients with metastasis involving various types of cancer, including lung, liver and bone. Contact us for more information about the history of Issels® and our immunotherapy programs.
As Dr. Luke explains, immunotherapy is about the difference in the immune system’s response to cancer rather than the difference in the types of tumors. Researchers are focusing on the number of mutations rather than the mutations themselves to determine the quality of the baseline immune response.
New technologies such as gene expression profiling make it easier to measure data. The hope is that eventually this will lead to a broader application of immunotherapy as opposed to a cancer-specific one.
Why Does Immunotherapy Work So Well on Lung Cancer and Melanoma?
According to Dr. Luke, the popular hypothesis is that immunotherapy is particularly effective against lung cancer and melanoma due to mutations making these cancer cells stand out more vividly from healthy tissues so the immune system can readily detect them.
Combining Immunotherapy with Other Treatments
There appears to be three main phenotypes in cancer patients that dictate their response to antibodies, from low to medium to high. Dr. Luke feels that combining immunotherapy with chemo and targeted therapies offers the most potential for long-term benefits.
Issels®: The Past, Present and Future of Cancer Immunotherapy
Issels® has been in the forefront of state-of-the-art cancer immunotherapy treatments for decades. Visit our website to learn more about the history of Issels® and our personally developed programs.
Our Issels® immunotherapy for cancer programs are integrative, combining different approaches that focus on the body’s natural defense mechanisms. Good nutrition is essential to keeping your immune system running at maximum strength to target and attack cancer cells.
Eating Right to Fight Cancer
Nutritional immunotherapy for cancer focuses on creating a diet that allows the body to break down and utilize food with maximum efficiency. It goes beyond finding the proper balance of protein, carbohydrates and fats to include choosing foods in their natural state that are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Consuming foods in the right combination is another important element of nutritional immunotherapy. The correct balance of acids and alkalines improves cell and tissue health while preventing undue strain on digestive organs.
How Poor Nutrition Affects Health
Research has discovered links between the development of cancer and poor nutritional habits such as excessive consumption of red meat and high-fat foods. Metabolic stress has also been found to diminish the effectiveness of the immune system and deplete muscle strength.
Our immunotherapy treatments are individually tailored to meet each patient’s unique needs. Nutritional programs are designed to correct nutritional deficiencies, support optimum functioning of the immune system and other organs, and boost the level of nutrients that increase NK cell activity.
Immunotherapy Offers Hope for Cancer Patients
Other non-toxic immunotherapy for cancer programs at Issels® include vaccines, stem cell treatments and systemic hyperthermia. Visit our website to read and hear testimonials from patients who have been successfully treated for leukemia, carcinoma, melanoma and many other forms of cancer.
After years of research, scientists are still unable to pinpoint the causes and predictors of cancer with absolute certainty. The good news is that immunotherapy for cancer now offers hope for patients who previously had few options.
An Immunotherapy Success Story
One such patient was Tish Vigna. Four years ago she was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer in her left lung, despite being a physically fit non-smoker. She underwent a course of chemotherapy, radiation and surgery only to discover that the cancer had spread to her right lung.
Tish’s oncologist suggested that she enter a clinical trial of immunotherapy for cancer at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto. After months of treatment, doctors found that the tumors had shrunk in half and there has been no subsequent growth.
How Does Immunotherapy Work?
Immunotherapy is a process of boosting the ability of your own immune system to fight cancer cells naturally. These treatments generally fall within two categories:
With adoptive T-cell therapy, doctors extract the attacking T-cells from a patient’s tumor to increase their numbers. The cells are then re-entered into the patient’s system where they are now better equipped for battle.
The immune system has a braking mechanism that prevents it from going into overdrive. Checkpoint inhibitors disable these brakes so the T-cells can attack cancer cells with full force.
Issels®: Leading the Way with Immunotherapy
While immunotherapy for cancer has been making a big splash in the medical community recently, Issels® has been successfully using these personally tailored treatments for decades. Contact us today for more information about our immunotherapy programs such as cancer vaccines and NK cells.
Vaccines have played a landmark role in medical history, helping to control or eradicate major diseases such as smallpox, measles, flu and polio. This effective form of treatment is also a significant part of our Issels® integrative immunotherapy for cancer programs.
How Do Vaccines Work?
The science behind vaccines may sound counterintuitive. Many vaccines are made from a weakened form of the microorganism that it’s being developed to fight. Once introduced into your system, the vaccines “teach” your immune system to recognize the microorganism as a threat to be attacked and destroyed.
The Issels® Vaccine Program
Our personalized cancer vaccines and cell therapy protocols are created from the patient’s own immune cells and combined with the immunobologic core treatment to target the tumor and its specific microenvironment to optimize their results.
We offer specialized cancer vaccines at the Issels® immuno-oncology center, including Autologous Dendritic Cells Cancer Vaccine, Prostate Cancer Vaccine, as well as the Issels Autologous Vaccine and combine them with the Lymphokine-Activated Killer (LAK) Cell and Natural Killer (NK) Cell protocols.
These vaccines and cell therapies are autologous, meaning they are created from the patient’s own blood. Since the blood cells provide information about the patient’s internal environment, the vaccines can be tailored to target the patient’s unique cancer-fighting properties.
Immunotherapy for Cancer: Boosting Your Body’s Natural Defenses
Cancer vaccines are only one of the non-toxic protocols we use to activate your body’s own immune response against tumors. Contact us today to learn why Issels® has been a leader in immunotherapy for cancer treatments for more than 50 years.
The researchers began by collecting blood and tissue samples from several men who had been diagnosed with breast cancer. These samples were then used for gene sequencing to identify mutations that could be causing the disease.
As a result, the scientists were able to identify mutations in the BRCA2 gene that triggered the cancer growth. In addition, the study found that lifestyle and reproductive factors such as hormonal therapy and alcohol consumption can also increase risk.
Differences between Male and Female Breast Cancer
The lumps (or primaries) associated with breast cancer are generally smaller in men than in women, making early detection difficult.
BRCA2 mutation carriers are found in lymph nodes, so men don’t experience the pain that would make them seek medical care.
Genomic Testing Personalizes Immunotherapy for Cancer
Each patient is different, so immunotherapy for cancer at Issels® uses genomic and other specialized testing to create the optimum course of treatment. Contact us today to learn more about our non-toxic integrative programs such as cancer vaccines and NK cells.