A new vaccine that can treat pancreatic cancer is currently being tested. Pancreatic cancer is known to be the most lethal cancers of all. The vaccine trial is called TeloVac, and the synthesized test version was provided to 53 hospitals across the United Kingdom. There are more than 1,000 patients, all suffering from pancreatic cancer, who have already signed in on the list.
Although vaccines are known to be helping antibodies to counteract infections, this type of vaccine acts as a powerful aid for the immune system in order for it to be able to fight cancer. This trial vaccine also needs the help of ordinary chemotherapy in order to increase the chances of it being successful in creating some resistance against the disease.
It contains small portions of telomerase, which is a protein that is continuously produced by the cells attributed to cancer. By increasing the immune system’s responsiveness, the doctors are hoping that these cells will be eventually destroyed by antibodies, and eventually lead to a steadily decrease of the tumor’s size.
John, who is one of the professors who is involved in the trial, said: “The problem is tumors are clever and are able to turn the immune cells into traitors which help to guard the tumor.”
Professor Neoptolemos believes that the immune system will not longer be oblivious to what is happening inside the tumor and will manage to attack the cancer cells, he stated:
The vaccine takes away the masking effect of the tumor
Pancreatic cancer is even worse than lung cancer. Estimates show that only 3 patients in 100 are able to resist more than 5 years.
The case of Rhona Longworth is an example of just how easily pancreatic cancer can occur. At 43 Rhona discovered that she has cancer. She got diagnosed in February this year.
For someone who’s never smoked and hardly ever drank, it was a big shock. I just hope the vaccine works and I’m one person who goes on to live a happy, healthy life after this
The funding for this research comes from Cancer Research UK. TeloVac will try to extend the life of all patients who are suffering from pancreatic cancer.