We ought to thank the neuroscience guys at Duke for being creative. They’ve discovered a brilliant yet unlikely treatment for the deadliest type of brain cancer.
Brain cancer is not pretty. It’s unfortunate for everyone involved. This specific treatment may not be perfect but it could help turn one year into four. That is priceless for a family.
What’s the secret treatment? The polio virus. Yes, the same polio that was holding back a young Forrest Gump. It turns out this once nasty and prevalent disease has some new found utility. In fact, the FDA has accelerated the development of the polio virus as a means to treat brain cancer.
Unlikely New Brain Cancer Treatment – How it Works
Polio is without a doubt terrible. Originally it would give you muscle paralysis. Now it can give you years on your life. The polio is an inactivated version, so there’s no worry of having polio and brain cancer.
The polio is bait. It’s subdued so it won’t do anything bad. It’s just a worm. The doctor will cast the bait to where your brain tumor is. This brings the big bad fish. The fish are the entirety of your immune system. They come at the dead polio virus with a vengeance and they take it apart. The fish are your little white blood cell soldiers and they’re destroying the polio.
The injected polio happens to be injected into the tumor. This means the immune system targets the tumor as well. The polio virus doesn’t do most of the fighting, but It does help to break down the cancer cells. It’s mostly bait. It brings out the big guns who then come destroy parts of the tumor as well.
Unlikely New Brain Cancer Treatment – What it Means
This treatment has almost unprecedented results. It’s important to understand what we’re dealing against first.
Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is the deadliest brain tumor around. It has the highest mortality rate. It spreads in your brain really fast and people don’t realize how small their brain cavity really is. A fast growing tumor in your brain is deadly. It can affect certain parts like your language center and most always results in death.
An extra few years can mean everything for someone suffering from this condition. There is a case to make that this is the most promising development in this generation’s modern medicine. The virus is a brilliant example of using your brain to help your brain. That’s Brainy.
There is some hope that the whole aminotherapy field could grow to help fight other types of cancer. Using these viruses to attack tumors could have application beyond just brain cancer. At the moment, we don’t have the extended capability, but Duke researchers are optimistic.
Unlikely Brain Cancer Treatment – A Case Study Snapshot
Stephanie Lipscomb is the first person to ever volunteer for using the polio virus as treatment. Her story helps to shed some light on why the new treatment is so wonderful.
In 2011 she was a regular 20 year old in nursing school. She found out she had GBM. 98% of the tumor was removed. A year later it came back. Recurrent glioblastoma is the worst of the worst.
Recurrent GBM means it always comes back. It’s highly fatal. There are no other options at this point so Stephanie decided to try the polio cure. For about two years the tumor steadily shrank until it disappeared.
There was no cancer left in her brain. It was completely cured. Now not everyone can get as lucky as her, and not everyone does. But Stephanie was given her life back. More research into this cure can perfect it. Eventually, it’s not a stretch to say a perfect cure is possible.