Last week, The New York Times reported on a potentially-exciting development in gene therapy based out of the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania. After failing other treatment approaches, three patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia underwent an experimental gene therapy, which reengineered their T-cells to attack and destroy leukemic cancer cells. Of the three patients treated with the experimental approach in this Phase One study, one is now in partial remission and two are in complete remission.
Training T-cells to treat cancer: Gene therapy in the news
Quoting Cuban health officials at the Center of Molecular Immunology in Havana (CMI), last week Popular Science and the Xinhua News Agency reported the production of ClimaVax EGF, a new vaccine for the treatment of late stage lung cancer. After a research and development period spanning nearly 25 years, some clinical trials have shown that the vaccine may increase median survival time by four to five months for patients with advanced lung cancer of stage three and four, with fewer side effects than standard therapies. The vaccine works by helping the body develop anti-bodies against proteins that prohibit uncontrolled cell proliferation, officials say, which are frequently found in cancerous cells but absent from healthy ones.
World’s first therapeutic lung cancer vaccine approved for sale and distribution in republic of Cuba
Spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the spinal canal that, puts pressure on the spinal cord that can cause considerable pain for patients. Though most often treated through a conservative regimen of physical therapy and pain management, in cases of intractable pain, surgery becomes a viable option.
Outside of fusion, these decompression procedures are among the most common in spinal surgery, with hundreds of thousands individuals each year receiving laminectomies, disectomies, and other types of decompression procedures. While minimally-invasive decompression techniques have been developed, new technologies such as Vertos' mild procedure and Baxano's iO-Flex System enable less invasive therapies that introduces a new option for patients before full surgery.
Minimally invasive technologies establish new therapies for spinal stenosis