Thursday, June 8, 2017

Cures

In the past few days I have learned of treatment breakthroughs for Multiple Myeloma and for Multiple Sclerosis - I have two friends which this will benefit. Both of them are very happy to learn about the progress.

The Multiple Myeloma (MM) news is that they have now found a treatment using immunotherapy which seems to put almost everyone into remission. MM is not curable but if patients can be put into long term remission with this new treatment, it looks like it is a step towards a cure. This news was announced at the ASCO conference last weekend.

"ASCO Perspective
“While it’s still early, these data are a strong sign that CAR T-cell therapy can send multiple myeloma into remission,” said ASCO Expert Michael S. Sabel, MD, FACS. “It’s rare to see such high response rates, especially for a hard-to-treat cancer. This serves as proof that immunotherapy and precision medicine research pays off. We hope that future research builds on this success in multiple myeloma and other cancers.”"


The Multiple Sclerosis (MS) news is that using nanoparticles. MS is not curable either but they have now found a way to alter a switch that regulates an immune cell. 

"“I discovered a small binary switch, controlled by a LIF, which regulates inside the immune cell itself. LIF is able to control the cell to ensure it doesn’t attack your own body but then releases the attack when needed.

“That LIF, in addition to regulating and protecting us against attack, also plays a major role in keeping the brain and spinal cord healthy. In fact it plays a major role in tissue repair generally, turning on stem cells that are naturally occurring in the body, making it a natural regenerative medicine, but also plays a big part in repairing the brain when it’s been damaged.

“So I thought, this is fantastic. We can treat auto-immune disease, and we’ve got something to treat MS, which attacks both the brain and the spinal cord. So you have a double whammy that can stop and reverse the auto-immunity, and also repair the damage caused in the brain.”"

I think this news is great. Amazing even. I am glad to see such medical research. These two instances represent big steps towards a cure for those disease. But I am bummed that there is no research yet that will help me.

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