Immunotherapy Cures Woman of Breast Cancer

  • Thread starter BillTre
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  • #1
BillTre
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Main Question or Discussion Point

lymphocytes from her tumor were taken out.
Those reacting to her tumor were multiplied an injected back in to her.
She has been cancer free for two years.
Science News article here.
 

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  • #2
Drakkith
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Interesting. It says they removed T-cells from her body and then used the ones primed to attack the tumor cells. Are different T-cells primed to attack different types of diseases?
 
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Ygggdrasil
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Each immune cell recognizes a specific part of a specific foreign protein. So, an immune cell that recognizes a protein from a specific virus is primed to attack that virus (and only that virus). Immune cells normally will not recognize "self" proteins made by the body. This prevents immune cells from attacking healthy cells (though sometimes this goes wrong in autoimmune diseases). Cancer, however, is caused by mutations to various proteins, and sometimes these mutant proteins can be recognized as non-self by immune cells. Immune cells that recognize these mutated cancer genes can help fight cancer and are the ones that are useful for immunotherapy.
 
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