Blood Cancer Therapy Is Last Chance for Some
An experimental therapy uses a person's weak immune system to fight deadly blood cancers.
Stanley Riddell is a researcher at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in the U.S. state of Washington. He and his colleagues added molecules to immune cells that attack cancer cells. They put the modified cells back in the patient, where they multiply and fight cancer.
"So, that's the one interesting thing about this. It doesn't require repeated treatments or repetitive cycles of chemotherapy," said Riddell.
"That's what I think in the future may be most important for patients – that it's a single treatment instead of many months of treatment."
It has shown great promise in small trials with patients. In one study of 35 patients with a type of leukemia, 94 percent experienced a complete remission. Fifty percent to 80 percent of patients with other blood cancers also saw a reduction in symptoms.
Riddell said, "This is encouraging because these are all patients who have failed all conventional therapies, including many kinds of bone marrow and stem cell transplants."
Getting these very high rates of remission is "obviously very exciting for us," he added. These patients do not have any other treatment options that are likely to work.
Immune system cells usually fight invading viruses and bacteria. They can also combat cancer. But they are soon overwhelmed by the disease.
The work by Hutchinson researchers increases this natural cancer-fighting ability.
Using the immune system has also shown promise against skin cancer and some lung cancers. But for other cancers, immunotherapy is considered a last resort.
Riddell said he thinks that may change. In some cases, it may be better than chemotherapy or even replace it, he said.
I'm Mary Gotschall.
1.blood cancer 血癌；白血病
Multiple myeloma is a blood cancer that typically strikes much later in life.
2.immune system 免疫系统
It was evident that their immune system was damaged.
3.cancer cells 癌细胞
The cancer cells may invade other parts of the body.
4.conventional therapies 常规治疗；常规疗法
Thousands of people die from malignant brain tumors every year, and the tumors are resistant to conventional therapies.
1."That's what I think in the future may be most important for patients – that it's a single treatment instead of many months of treatment."
instead of 代替；取代；相反
Instead of making progress, my work actually seems to be going backwards.
Instead of answering my question he began to beat about the bush.
2.Riddell said he thinks that may change. In some cases, it may be better than chemotherapy or even replace it, he said.
In some cases 在...情况下；有时候
In some cases, however, flexibility is absolutely critical.
In some cases, couples have to sleep in separate bedrooms.