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    Unconventional treatment strategy controls -- rather than eradicates -- cancer

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    yoly
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    Unconventional treatment strategy controls -- rather than eradicates -- cancer

    Post by yoly on Thu Feb 25 2016, 11:03

    Public Release: 24-Feb-2016
    Unconventional treatment strategy controls -- rather than eradicates -- cancer

    Standard chemotherapeutic approaches rely on maximum tolerated doses (MTD) of chemotherapy, invariably selecting for the drug-resistant population by killing off not only drug-sensitive cancer cells but also healthy blood vessels... view more

    Credit: Klement et al., Science Translational Medicine (2016)

    Can we learn to live with--rather than kill--cancer? A new study suggests that frequent, low-dose chemotherapy that keeps tumor growth under control may be more effective than standard high-dose chemotherapy that seeks to eradicate cancer cells completely. The treatment strategy, which was tested in mice, flies in the face of conventional cancer therapy, which generally hits patients with the maximum drug dose possible to kill off the largest number of tumor cells. Despite aggressive treatment, complete cancer eradication is rare and toxic side effects all too common. Recently, researchers have questioned the benefits of standard chemotherapy because while it destroys drug-sensitive tumor cells, it leaves behind drug-resistant cells. By eliminating the former population of tumor cells, the drug allows resistant cells to take over and drive tumor growth uncontrolled. Taking into account the evolutionary forces that drive cancer resistance, Pedro Enriquez-Navas and colleagues designed an evolution-based treatment strategy that adjusts the drug dose based on how the tumor responds. Rather than trying to shrink the tumor completely, the so-called adaptive therapy seeks to stabilize the tumor by maintaining a small population of drug-sensitive tumor cells to suppress the growth of resistant cells. The researchers tested the approach with the chemotherapy drug paclitaxel in mice with two different types of breast cancer. Standard chemotherapy shrunk the mouse breast tumors, but only to have them grow back as soon as treatment stopped. Another treatment regimen that skips doses whenever the tumor shrunk also inevitably resulted in tumor progression. In contrast, adaptive therapy consisting of high initial drug doses followed by progressively lower doses as the tumor responded was more effective in controlling tumor growth than either standard therapy or dose skipping. In fact, the treatment allowed between 60 and 80% of the mice to be weaned off the drug completely without relapsing for an extended period of time. A related Focus by Giannoula Klement discusses how the study's eco-evolutionary model of cancer may prompt researchers and clinicians to rethink current therapeutic strategies for cancer.

    http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-02/aaft-uts022216.php
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    Jan1
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    Re: Unconventional treatment strategy controls -- rather than eradicates -- cancer

    Post by Jan1 on Thu Feb 25 2016, 18:36

    I also read an article about this in the Huffington Post ...

    I thought it a different way to approach Cancer, and they were interesting results ... "but also as Lead researcher Dr Robert Gatenby, from Moffitt Cancer Centre and Research Institute in Florida, said he was "surprised" by the findings.

    "We propose that by eliminating all of the sensitive cells and leaving only the resistant cells behind, this approach actually results in the most rapid possible tumour progression," he said.

    "So, we use an adaptive therapy approach that uses smaller doses with the deliberate goal of leaving behind a population of cells that are still sensitive."

    He added: "Our results suggest that this adaptive therapeutic strategy can be adapted to clinical imaging and can result in prolonged progression-free survival in breast cancer."

    Gatenby said that one of the biggest hurdles now is for people to change their views of cancer, so that rather than trying to eradicate the disease, they learn to live with it instead."

    ... as always, I think, more research will be needed

    All the best Jan

      Current date/time is Mon Oct 22 2018, 07:06