Breakthrough Potential In Treating Brain Cancer

[Public domain via Wikimedia]

Researchers at the Mass General Cancer Center in Massachusetts may have recently had a breakthrough. A team of scientists recently shared the results for the first three patients in a clinical trial of CAR-T cell therapy for glioblastoma, commonly known as brain cancer, and the results were nothing short of a miracle.

Using CAR-T cell therapy, the doctors deployed a patient’s own immune cells to fight cancer, making it a therapy that is inherently personalized to treat the disease specific to the patient.

The Washington Examiner reported the good news. 

Scientists gathered patients’ immune cells and changed them into “living drugs” that scan and fight glioblastoma. These tests temporarily dwindled the size of tumors, researchers reported on Wednesday. 

There have been successful developments to battle blood cancers such as leukemia with CAR-T therapy, but experts have failed to make this method work for solid tumors. 

Researchers at hospitals in Massachusetts and the University of Pennsylvania are working to create CAR-T therapy procedures, hoping to cure glioblastoma. 

“It’s very early days,” UPenn’s Dr. Stephen Bagley said, but “we’re optimistic that we’ve got something to build on here, a real foundation.”

The team at Mass General tested three patients with the new method and the results sent shockwaves. The researchers saw rapidly shrinking tumors within two days. 

“None of us could believe it,” one of the researchers told the newspaper. “That doesn’t happen.”  

Glioblastoma is a highly aggressive form of brain cancer, characterized by rapid cell growth and invasion into surrounding brain tissue. It is the most common and deadliest type of malignant primary brain tumor in adults. Glioblastomas often cause symptoms such as headaches, seizures, cognitive impairment, and neurological deficits.

Nearly 15,000 Americans are diagnoses with the cancer every year.

Despite advancements in treatment, including surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, the prognosis for glioblastoma patients remains poor, with a median survival of around 12 to 18 months from diagnosis. The aggressive nature of glioblastoma, along with its ability to evade conventional treatments and recur, poses significant challenges for patients and healthcare providers alike. Ongoing research efforts aim to improve understanding of the disease mechanisms and develop more effective therapeutic strategies to combat this devastating condition.

It seems like we’re on our way there. 

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  1. Share therapy worldwide needed

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