Cancer can be referred to as a group of diseases in which cells grow abnormally and spread to other parts of the body in the form of tumors. This disease comes in various forms such as lung cancer, breast cancer, brain cancer, kidney cancer and colon cancer. All over the world today, there are records of people who have lost their lives because of cancer and there are still so many people living with it. Just like heart disease, cancer is known to be deadly and one of the diseases that cause death in the United States according to the American Cancer Society.
Even the World Health Organization estimates that about 14 million new cancer cases spring up regularly worldwide. This disease has reduced the quality of life of so many people and some of the effects on the body are severe pain, fatigue, insomnia, and low fertility rate. Despite the fact that there are treatments for it, some people still have not gotten cured and the side effects that come with such treatments are alarming. This is why more researches have been done to find a lasting solution to this disease. Some of the new discoveries in cancer research are as follows:
- Discovery of CD36: This is a protein that works on cancer cells to make them spread. It is usually found among the tumor cells and depends on fatty acids to do its work. The more fatty substances are consumed, the more this protein acts on it to make the cancer spread all over the body. This was discovered by the Institute of Research, Barcelona
- New immunotherapy treatment: In 2015, the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancercame up with this new discovery for treating lung cancer. This treatment works on a patient’s immune system to help destroy cancer cells. And when used, it prevents the proliferation of the disease to other parts of the body. Some of the drugs which have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration that are used for this treatment are Nivolumab, and pembrolizumab.
- Discovery of Trastuzumab (Herceptin) and Lapatinib (Tyverb): Researchers at the Institute of Cancer Research in London discovered that if these two drugs are used by a breast cancer patient, they make the already spread tumors shrink without any trace in 11 days. This discovery will surely defeat chemotherapy which does not completely cure breast cancer. So, with the discovery of these drugs, there is no longer any need for chemotherapy.
- Molecularly Targeted Therapy: For this therapy, certain drugs are used at the molecular level to tackle and terminate a specific kind of cancer. These drugs are made to target those molecules that lead to the growth and spread of leukemia which is cancer of the blood. An example of such a drug is Glivec which works best for leukemia.
These discoveries in cancer research have been tested and positive results have been gotten. But we believe very soon scientists will carry out more research to find the best medications that can completely eradicate cancerous cells in the body system.
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