Scientists will be boosting patients’ immune systems to fight off disease. And that’s it.
Cancer researchers are constantly forging towards new horizons. Some discoveries are smaller- like fact that blueberry extract could help you if you have cervical cancer – and others have a larger presence, with the potential for huge impact.
The work being done by a team based at the Francis Crick Institute in London is part of the latter.
Scientists have found a way to use the immune system of strangers to help fight off cancer.
Essentially, immune cells from a healthy person are being injected into cancer patients with the goal of strengthening the immune system of the person who is sick. In this way, researchers are hoping to allow the person with cancer to fight off the disease, using their own body.
According to a lengthy report on Daily Mail in the UK, it’s being labelled a “natural ‘DIY’ approach”. And researchers are excited. In fact, they say the groundbreaking treatment could save millions of lives in years to come.
Professor Adrian Hayday from the Francis Crick Institute in London told the Daily Mail,
“Using the body’s own immune cells to target the tumour is elegant because tumours evolve so quickly there is no way a pharmaceutical company can keep up with it. But the immune system has been evolving for over four billion years to do just that.”
The treatment isn’t yet approved for general use anywhere, but pioneering transfusions will likely happen in 2019. Fingers crossed.