Scientists are buckling down on a universal cancer vaccine which will reportedly eliminate any type of disease. By engineering the immune cells to attack the cancer cells, any disease
The thoroughgoing approach requires rewiring of the T-cells – a lymphocyte helping in immune response and putting back into the body. When the cell is inside, they will enable the immune system to combat any kind of cancer, according to Gizmag.
Chimeric Antigen Receptors, cancer-finding molecules thus push the rewired cells into the body to recognize the cancer cells. At this point, they attack the cancer cells and eradicate them.
“The vaccines are fast and inexpensive to produce, and virtually any tumor antigen can be encoded by RNA,” said Professor Ugur Sahin from Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany in a report by Telegraph.
“The approach introduced here may be regarded as a universally applicable novel vaccine class for cancer immunotherapy,” he added.
He said that it would be a therapeutic vaccine which would be prescribed to those who have already developed cancer.
According to The Australian, there are two types of therapeutic vaccines which are globally approved. One was approved for early stage kidney cancer in Russia and another one was for prostate cancer, accepted by the US Food and Drug Administration.
Researchers’ core focus is “dendritic cells”- known as antigen presenting cells. They keep an eagle eye on the external cells entering the body. As soon as the cells spot a cancer cell, they take the cells from the surface and expose it to T-cells, which further signal them to fight the rogue cell.
Generally, the immune system is not able to recognize the cancer cells in the body as they look like a normal cell.
Sahin said that the vaccine can be modified to form antigen to all the types of cancers. “(It) is therefore in principle applicable for all tumor types,” he said.