A vaccine that can kill cancer

11/06/2011 09:52

 News from Jerusalem :  Israeli company formulates a drug that ‘trains' the immune system to seek and destroy malignant cells that have already invaded the body.

As we get older, modern medicine will help more of us live with cancer rather than die from it. That's the assumption behind a vaccine to treat cancer, being developed by a pharmaceutical company in Israel.

Vaxil BioTherapeutics' main product, ImMucin, is now in advanced clinical trials at Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem.

CEO Julian Levy tells ISRAEL21c that this therapeutic vaccine doesn't prevent cancer from invading, but activates and enhances the body's natural immune system to seek and destroy cancer cells already present in the body, such as those lingering after cancer surgery.

Malignant cells normally get out of control by tricking the immune system not to notice them, a strategy that works especially well in older people because immune systems get less efficient with age.

The vaccine is currently being tested against a blood cancer called multiple myeloma. However, Vaxil's scientific breakthrough is based on a drug platform, VaxHit, which can be tailored to treat not only 90 percent of cancers, he says, but also diseases such as tuberculosis.

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