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European Experts Develop New Cancer Treatment Method

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(CTN News) – Experts working across disciplines have developed an innovative method of removing tumours in the field of cancer treatment. Cancer cells can be removed by using photoimmunotherapy, a method that uses light to make them grow in the dark.

A team of European engineers, physicists, neurosurgeons, biologists, and immunologists recently tested this light-activated therapy in mice with glioblastoma, a type of brain cancer, according to The Guardian.

How does photoimmunotherapy work?

With this type of therapy, lasers are used to light the tumour and allow cells to be removed more effectively than with other forms of therapy.

There are currently four types of cancer treatment – surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy – and collaborators of the recent trial are confident that photoimmunotherapy will be the fifth.

‘Affibodies’ are engineered protein molecules used in the new Cancer treatment. Affibodies are then combined with IR700 and injected into mice.

In mice, the molecular compound bound with high precision to EGFR, a target protein. Using a laser, the experts shone light on the compound, which caused the dye to glow, enabling doctors to remove the cancer cells. After this, the laser was switched to near-infrared, which activated anti-tumour activity.

Results of the trial

Scientists at the Institute of Cancer Research in London used mice with glioblastoma, one of the most aggressive forms of brain cancer. The scientists found that even the tiniest cancer cells were illuminated by photoimmunotherapy.

After the surgery, the remaining cells were wiped out. This form of therapy could make the immune system target the same cancer cells, suggesting future protection from glioblastoma.

Researchers told The Guardian that brain cancers like glioblastoma can be difficult to treat, and there are too few Cancer treatment options.

Due to the location of tumours, surgery can be challenging, and new ways to see tumour cells during surgery and treat residual cancer cells afterward could be beneficial,” she said.

A new Cancer treatment method could help people live longer after cancer treatment, according to Charles Evans, the research information manager at Cancer Research UK. However, there are some technical challenges to overcome.

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