Tag Archives: Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatic Cancer: Hijacking the Immune System to Hide Its Growth

Pancreatic Cancer: Hijacking the Immune System to Hide Its Growth
Pancreatic Cancer: Hijacking the Immune System to Hide Its Growth

With a five-year survival rate of only three percent, pancreatic cancer is one of the more difficult types of cancer to treat. Scientists from Cancer Research UK, in collaboration with scientists from pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, recently announced their discovery of a promising method to help defeat these tumors.

Pancreatic Cancer’s “Stealth Attack”

The immune system is your body’s first line of defense against cancer cells and other foreign bodies that threaten your health. In the case of pancreatic cancer, once the cells make it past the initial gauntlet, they move on to hijack parts of the immune system to facilitate their growth.

The UK study, published in Cancer Cell, reported the team’s discovery of CXCR2, which is a protein that serves as the gatekeeper for pancreatic tumors, guarding them from attack by immune cells. Use of an experimental drug that blocks CXCR2 allowed T-cells to enter the tumor, making it more vulnerable to treatment.

Immunotherapy for Pancreatic Cancer

Until now, the shielding process has made pancreatic cancer particularly resistant to immunotherapy. Professor Peter Johnson, chief clinician at Cancer Research UK, said their study suggests that using the new drug in concert with immunotherapy treatments could create “a powerful weapon” in the fight against pancreatic cancer.

Using the Body’s Natural Defenses to Defeat Cancer

For more than 60 years, our Issels® center has been the leader in the use of immunotherapy for pancreatic cancer and many other types. Contact us today for more information about our personalized non-toxic treatments, including cancer vaccines, hyperthermia and gene-targeted therapies.

Hard to Fight Pancreatic Cancer Responds to Immunotherapy

New Cancer Treatment For Pancreatic Cancer
Pancreatic Cancer Treatment News: Chemotherapy Plus Immunotherapy

Pancreatic cancer is one of the more difficult forms to diagnose, resulting in a low survival rate. A recent study found that immunotherapy for cancer holds great promise for more effective treatment.

Current treatments for pancreatic cancer

Surgery is the best option for pancreatic cancer. Unfortunately, the tumors are often discovered too late for surgery to be feasible. Doctors are left to use chemotherapy and other methods to control the cancer.

Medical breakthrough with immunotherapy

Researchers at University of Rochester Medical Center in New York set out to find a treatment that could make pancreatic cancer more receptive to surgery. The test involved use of PF-0416309, an immunotherapy drug that targets immune cells in pancreatic tumors.

Subjects included 47 patients whose pancreatic cancer had begun to spread. Eight received chemotherapy alone, while the others received a combination of chemotherapy and the immunotherapy drug.

Most of those who received the combination experienced a halt in the tumor’s growth, which was double the rate projected by the research team. Some saw their tumors shrink, while in one patient the cancer disappeared.

What’s next?

Side effects forced three patients to drop out, but otherwise no one had side effects more serious than those with chemotherapy alone. The researchers now plan to extend the scope of the test with phase 2 trials.

Issels® is the leader in immunotherapy for cancer

For years, our Issels® center has been ahead of the curve on immunotherapy for cancer. Our treatment programs are created individually,

based on each patient’s specific needs. Visit our website to learn more about cancer vaccines and other non-toxic immunotherapy treatments.

New Advance in Pancreatic Cancer Treatment Just in Time for Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month

New Understanding of Pancreatic Cancer
New Understanding of Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatic cancer can be difficult to treat with conventional methods, such as chemotherapy. With this form of cancer on the rise, researchers have been working on developing other forms of treatment that might be more effective. Recent developments have led to a new type of treatment for pancreatic cancer that is showing promise as a highly successful way to boost survival rates.

Irreversible Electroporation

Researchers have come up with a treatment that delivers small yet strong electrical bursts that destroy pancreatic cancer cells, which is known as irreversible electroporation (IRE). These electrical bursts create holes in the cells, which leads them to die off. The use of this type of treatment has been associated with a survival rate that nearly doubles for those who also undergo a traditional form of treatment, such as chemo-radiotherapy. IRE is able to affect cancer cells while leaving noncancerous tissue around those cells unharmed, which can lower the risk of side effects and complications.

Researchers are planning on testing IRE in clinical trials to better determine its effectiveness for those with pancreatic cancer. The current study that was conducted involved 200 adults who were diagnosed with Stage III pancreatic cancer. While roughly half of those participants ended up with complications after undergoing IRE, these effects were considered minimal. Researchers found that the average survival rate for study participants was two years, although some lived for up to seven years.

If you would like more information on our non-toxic forms of treatment for pancreatic cancer, please contact the Issels® Center for Integrative Immuno-Oncology. We offer immunotherapy and other types of alternative cancer treatments.

Foundation Works to Create Pancreatic Cancer Awareness

Creating Awareness
Creating Awareness

Next week in November we celebrate Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month. Did you know that in the U.S. pancreatic cancer comprises just 3 percent of cancer cases, yet it accounts for 7 percent of fatalities? For those affected by the disease, information and support can be harder to find compared to more common forms of cancer.

When Herb Kosten passed away in 2003, his family decided to form an organization to provide support and awareness for pancreatic disease in the Memphis area. The foundation has also provided half a million dollars in research funding to a local university.

As the late Kosten’s brother Alan says, the family could find no information about pancreatic cancer besides what the doctor told them.

As proponents of individualized care and integrative immuno-oncology, we at Issels® support the idea that fighting cancer takes groundbreaking research as well as a holistic approach to patient care. In addition to funding research at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, the Herb Kosten Foundation hosts a support group for patients and family members. As the only pancreatic cancer support group within hundreds of miles, this provides a major source of comfort and empowerment to people who need it.

Treatment for pancreatic cancer often involves a difficult surgery that takes an entire day and often leads to complications. With a mortality rate around 90 percent, those affected by the disease seek to rally awareness and support for additional research in the quest for a cure.

At the Issels® Center for Integrative Immuno-Oncology, we continue to seek and improve personalized non-toxic treatments for pancreatic cancer and other aggressive forms of the disease. Contact us today to find out about our non-toxic treatments that combine immunotherapy and other alternative options available.

New Research Tackles Chemotherapy Side Effects

Tackling The Side Effects
Tackling The Side Effects

Researches at Wichita State University are delving into nanotechnology in an effort to decrease the negative side effects cancer drugs have on patients. The technology will be a huge boon to patients suffering the many side effects of cancer treatment: nausea, bowel issues, hair loss, infections, pain, anemia, and more, preventing patients’ bodies from being further weakened by the treatment of the disease.

Technology 100,000 times smaller than a strand of hair
The mighty but miniscule technology has been developed to magnetically target drugs with the goal of localizing treatment effects specifically to tumor sites, thus decreasing the spread and negative effects of the drugs throughout the body.

Positive results have researchers hopeful
Targeted for patients with skin and breast cancer, “in vitro” (petri dish/test tube) studies as well as “in vivo,” studies involving mice, have shown positive results. The group, including WSU professors Ramazan Asmatulu, Paul Wooley, Shang-You Yang, and several graduate students, is in the final stages of receiving a patent from the study, which will later be tried on humans.

How it works
Nanocomposite, magnetic microspheres were created which are capable of carrying protein-based chemotherapy drugs. The spheres are later incorporated with an albumin and biodegradable polymer and injected into the body. With the help of a magnetic field, the accumulation of drugs can be increased at targeted cancer sites.

Looking for cancer treatment options that help build your body without the weakening effects of traditional therapies? Issels® can help. Learn more about our individualized, comprehensive immunotherapy treatments today.

Tips to Weathering Chemotherapy

Getting Through Chemotherapy
Getting Through Chemotherapy

When you go through cancer treatments, you’re not alone. Here are some great suggestions to help weather chemotherapy:

Know how to manage the nausea. Feeling ill and vomiting are the worst parts of chemotherapy for most people. Spread out your eating across many small meals instead of three regular meals, avoid beverages during mealtimes, and eat slowly.

Try out meditation and emotional exercises. Being in control of your emotions can help when side effects hit. Don’t be afraid to address your emotional hurdles through meditation, talk therapy, and alternative medicines.

Be prepared to try new foods. Many people undergoing chemo feel like foods taste different, even common and favorite foods. If what you eat tastes odd or foul, branch out and try lots of things—even foods you typically dislike—and find what works.

Stick with healthy foods to feel your best. Cupcakes may be tempting, but most people do best when avoiding junk foods, sweets, fatty foods, and fried foods. These treats should remain treats, while a generally healthy diet will keep you feeling best.

Get some hats, including one with a wide brim. Before chemotherapy, you may wish to shave your head and get a wig. Find some hats, too, including warm and comfy ones for when you feel chilly and a wide-brimmed hat to help with sun protection.

See the dentist first. Teeth cleanings are a bad idea during chemotherapy, so see the dentist a few weeks beforehand and use saltwater rinses to gently help with sores.

We’re also here to help with individualized, holistic treatments. Talk to us if you’re interested in learning about alternative cancer treatment options.