Dutch Study Unveils Breakthrough for Aggressive Cancer

The U.S. medical journal Clinical Cancer Research recently published a breakthrough study showing that a light-based treatment clears cancer from the entire body.  Conducted at Leiden University, the experimental immunologic study showed that the treatment can destroy aggressive tumors while at the same time activating the immune system to clear away deadly distant metastases. 

A light-based cancer therapy with the photosensitizer Bremachlorin, called Bremachlorin-PDT, is now garnering serious attention in the Netherlands. The treatment has been clinically approved in Russia since 2006, and this latest study illuminates a breakthrough for the treatment of advanced cancers.

Scientists at Leiden University Medical Centre (LUMC) in the Netherlands found that combining Bremachlorin-PDT with a peptide-based vaccine provided whole-body protection against cancer. Bremachlorin-PDT alone significantly slowed down tumor growth and extended survival for all the mice in the study.

Moreover, one-third of the test subjects were completely cured of cancer after a single immuno-PDT treatment; with the addition of the peptide-based vaccine, all of the cured mice were fully protected against the subsequent development of the same kind of cancer. 

And finally, the combination treatment of primary tumors led to the complete eradication of distant secondary tumors, or metastases, as reported online ahead-of-print in the peer-reviewed medical journal, Clinical Cancer Research.

In our next post, we’ll give you a detailed overview of the LUMC study, the specific treatment strategy they used, and implications for the future of cancer medicine.


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Kleinovink JW, van Driel PB, Snoeks TJ, Prokopi N, Fransen MF, Javier Cruz L, Mezzanotte L, Chan A, Lowik CW, Ossendorp F. Combination of photodynamic therapy and specific immunotherapy efficiently eradicates established tumors. Clin Cancer Res. 2015 Nov 6. [Epub ahead of print]


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