Promising news in the fight against brain cancer, stoking hopes for patients to live longer

Syringe

Researchers are revisiting a vaccine that could extend brain cancer survival by boosting patients’ immune systems to fight cancerous tumors.  The vaccine had undergone a Phase I clinical trial in 2001 but was largely abandoned for lack of efficacy. Now, a new methodology is breathing life back into the treatment’s potential to extend the life of those who suffer from brain cancer.  The team at Thomas Jefferson University is looking to administer the vaccine to patients before chemotherapy, so that their immune systems are less compromised and better able to be directed by the vaccine to attack tumors. Initial results of a more recent Phase I trial are more promising.  Phase II trials are slated to begin in early 2015.

Read More:  http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/11/141113105421.htm

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Maybe you CAN teach an old dog new tricks?

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Researchers aim to use ‘middle aged’ pet dogs to test rapamycin, folowing the drug’s lifespan extension in experiments with mice. Developed as an anti-rejection drug for patients who have just undergone kidney transplants, rapamycin has recently been shown to extend the lives of mice by more than 10%.

Rapamycin acts on a protein that is involved in cell growth and has an anti-inflammatory impact on the body. It was also the first drug shown to extend lifespan in a mammalian species.

“As organisms age, inflammation can increase and that is related to many disorders,” added [University of Washington in Seattle Dr. Matt] Kaeberlein. “But that is not the only thing that rapamycin does. It also turns on a process called autophagy which is in effect the process by which cells dispose of the garbage that builds up inside them.”

Read More: http://www.theguardian.com/science/2014/nov/08/anti-ageing-drugs-tested-on-dogs-cancer-heart

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