Cancer research has come a long way from the typical medication-based, surgical, chemotherapy, or radiation type of treatments. Today immunotherapies are making a significant headway in battling breast cancer among other types of oncological diseases. Cancer vaccines in particular are making an impact on preventing as well as treating various types of cancer.
Nature News reported that researchers are bringing more attention to vaccines that are personalized for each individual type of tumor. So far clinical trials have shown promise. Various researchers presented their findings at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) annual meeting.
More stakeholders and biotech companies are making an impact on revolutionizing immunotherapies including personalized and tailored cancer vaccines. While some feel that there will be significant benefits for patients in the long run, others are wary since there are still many technical difficulties in developing these types of treatments.
One example from last year was the treatment of patients with melanoma. An immune response was triggered within these patients by administering a cancer vaccine that targets tumor antigens. Various biotechnology companies and academic groups are quickly moving into the field of immunotherapies and personalized cancer vaccine development, Nature reports.
While some researchers are excited about the potential and personalized cancer vaccines, others believe that focusing research on immunotherapies that can target a wide variety of antigens could prove to be more useful since it would allow more mass-scale manufacturing standards.
When it comes to the world of breast cancer, the Cleveland Clinic and Dr. Vincent Tuohy’s team are currently working on clinical trials for the first preventive breast cancer vaccine. If the clinical trials prove successful, this cancer vaccine could prevent as many as 95 percent of breast cancer cases.
In preclinical trials, the Tuohy preventive breast cancer vaccine was found to be 100 percent effective at blocking breast cancer development in mice. The compound alpha-lactalbumin is the main component of this particular preventive vaccine.
“We believe that this vaccine will someday be used to prevent breast cancer in adult women in the same way that vaccines have prevented many childhood diseases,” Dr. Vincent Tuohy said in a public statement. “If it works in humans the way it works in mice, this will be monumental. We could eliminate breast cancer.”
The Breast Health and Healing Foundation supports research aiming to put an end to breast cancer. This includes the research behind the Pink Vaccine as well as the breast cancer virus findings. Through the innovations within immunotherapies, it is possible scientists will be able to put an end to this disease in the future.