Immunotherapy Medicine Better Than Chemotherapy In Treating Lung Cancer

Posted: Dec 23 2015, 6:26am CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

Immunotherapy Medicine better than Chemotherapy in treating Lung Cancer
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It has been found that immunotherapy medicine is better than chemotherapy in treating advanced cases of lung cancer.

A large number of people with mortal illness can benefit from a novel treatment. Immunotherapy has come to the rescue of lung cancer patients and the nostrum has proven to be much more effective than chemotherapy.

Over 1000 people with advanced lung cancer were studied in depth. The drug pembrolizumab was used as an immunotherapy agent. This was in place of the chemotherapy drug docetaxel. Those who received the immunotherapy drug lived longer than the chemotherapy drug recipients.

This sort of treatment avoids the toxic nature of chemotherapeutic procedures. And the cure works over a large range of lung cancer patients. This is indeed a good thing. Immunotherapy has proven to be a better form of treatment than more conventional cures.

"This treatment provides real hope of long-lasting responses while avoiding the toxicities of typical chemotherapy in a broad population of lung cancer patients," said Garon, who is an associate professor of hematology and oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine.

"We are excited that these results have identified a larger group of patients for whom in general, immunotherapy is a superior treatment option than traditional approaches."

The results of the study published in the journal The Lancet on December 19.

Lung cancer is the #1 cancer on a global level. Over 158,000 people in the US die from this mortal illness every year. Non-small cell lung cancer composes 85% of all lung cancers. Pembrolizumab has the brand name of Keytruda.

The drug is basically an antibody that counters the protein PD-1. This is expressed by the immune system. Once it binds to PD-L1, PD-1 acts as an immune watchdog. This supresses the T cells.

The interaction of PD-1 and PD-L1 are disturbed and so the story goes. Thus the immune system attacks the cancer cells. The binding of PD-1 with PD-L1 prevents the T cells from attacking the cells.

The groups of people were randomly assigned to various subsets in the experiment. And two groups were given immunotherapy drugs while one was administered chemotherapy drugs.

Those who received immunotherapy drugs had their tumors undergo shrinkage. And besides this, those who received immunotherapy drugs simply lived longer than the chemotherapy subjects.

Toxicity levels were lower in those receiving pembrolizumab as well. This shows that this form of treatment shows extreme promise for the future.

As medicine advances and the healing arts begin to look more like nanotechnological fields of physico-chemical biology, the cures and panaceas that will appear will amaze humanity with their miraculous nature.

The times ahead hold a lot of potential for cures for cancer which consists of cells that are actually weak in nature. The solution to cancer cells is to boost the immune system and remain positive. Isolation and carcinogens are modern day dangers that often end in the afflicted person catching cancer especially after a certain age.

"By continuing to refine and expand our selection of patients who stand to benefit from this type of therapy, we are profoundly changing the way that patients with this common cancer are treated," said Garon.

"For most patients, this now offers data showing that immunotherapy leads to superior clinical outcomes with a side effect profile that is generally favorable to our traditional therapies."

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
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