New Hope Through Innovatıve Cancer Treatment
The main goal of any cancer therapy is to remove the tumor as completely as possible. There is now a wide range of options available. In addition to the “classic” forms of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, numerous innovative medicines have been developed especially in recent years. These have a more selective action against the tumor cells in certain forms of cancer and selected groups of patients and are therefore usually better tolerated. This often gives the patient a good quality of life.
So-called targeted therapies (“target therapies”) target selected targets of cancer cells. Differences are so-called small molecules (small molecules) with defined chemical properties and immunobiological substances (antibodies). By blocking specific properties and signaling pathways in the tumor cell, it is possible to slow down or completely halt its growth. This is achieved through a wealth of intelligent approaches, eg:
Growth signals of the tumor cell are switched off.
The neovascularization of the tumor is interrupted and thereby virtually starved.
The “waste disposal” of the tumor cell is inhibited. As a result, cancer cells are destroyed by their own waste.
Through repair mechanisms for damage in the genome of the degenerate tumor cell their programmed death can be brought about.
Applications: Targeted therapies have been successfully used in a variety of cancers, including certain forms of breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, kidney cancer, black skin cancer and blood cancer.
A completely different approach is followed by the latest development in the field of cancer therapy. Basic Principle of Modern Immunotherapeutics: The body’s own immune system has the task of freeing our organism from invading pathogens and degenerated cells and thus keeping them healthy. However, certain structures must be present so that the immune system recognizes whether it is a “pest” and can be active against it. Tumor cells use a variety of mechanisms to protect themselves from the attack of the immune system. These include camouflage, release of immunosuppressive substances or the inhibition of so-called checkpoint molecules, which are responsible for the control of immune reactions. Meanwhile, medicines are available that can be used to cancel the inhibition of control signals induced by tumor cells. Ultimately, it reverses the suppression of the immune system, stimulates its activity and establishes a balance between the body’s own defenses and tumor growth.
Areas of application: The new immunotherapies are already used for breast cancer, black skin cancer and certain types of tumors in the lungs, kidneys, intestines, bladder, prostate and brain and in leukemia.
cancer therapyIn cancer medicine, magnetic resonance imaging is used to assess the location and size of tumors and metastases.
The innovative mechanisms of action are characterized by very good effects, but healthy body tissue is largely spared. As a result, usually only minor side effects occur and the quality of life of patients remains at a high level.
Some of the new therapies are already available in tablet form, which makes the application much more comfortable for the patients.
Countless studies are currently being conducted around the world to constantly investigate new mechanisms of action and the development of innovative substances. With a rapid broadening of the range of therapies is therefore expected. A key challenge for science is also to find parameters that can be used to estimate the individual’s response before a treatment is started. The goal is to filter out of the abundance of possibilities the strategy that promises the best benefit for the respective patient. This would be beneficial not least for economic reasons. Because the new drugs are very expensive and should be reserved for those patients who actually benefit from it.
We recommend the optimal use of the most suitable therapy option by multidisciplinary tumor boards! These are also available here in the Rudolfinerhaus.