Precision immunotherapy is a promising new approach to treating cancer. It’s a cancer treatment that uses the body’s immune system to attack cancer cells. Unlike traditional cancer treatments like chemotherapy and radiation therapy, precision immunotherapy is tailored to the individual patient’s cancer and immune system.
What Is Precision Immunotherapy?
To understand precision immunotherapy, it’s essential to understand how the immune system works. It recognizes and attacks foreign invaders like viruses, bacteria, and cancer cells. However, sometimes the immune system doesn’t recognize cancer cells as foreign invaders, which allows the cancer cells to grow and spread.
Precision immunotherapy is designed to help the immune system recognize and attack cancer cells. It uses the patient’s immune cells, called T cells. These cells are collected from the patient’s blood and genetically modified to recognize and attack cancer cells.
The process of precision immunotherapy starts with a biopsy of the patient’s tumor. This biopsy is used to identify specific proteins on the surface of the cancer cells that can be targeted by the T cells. The T cells are then extracted from the patient’s blood and genetically modified to produce receptors that target these proteins.
The modified T cells are then multiplied in the lab until there are enough to be used in treatment. The T cells are then infused into the patient’s body, attacking the cancer cells.
Precision immunotherapy has shown promise in treating various types of cancer, including leukemia, lymphoma, and some solid tumors. It’s still an experimental treatment, but early results have been encouraging.
One of the advantages of precision immunotherapy is that it’s highly targeted. Precise immunotherapy only targets cancer cells, unlike chemotherapy, which can damage healthy and cancer cells. This means fewer side effects, and patients generally have a better quality of life during treatment.
Precision immunotherapy is still relatively new, and many challenges must be addressed. One of the biggest challenges is making the treatment more effective. Only a small percentage of patients respond to precision immunotherapy, and researchers are working to understand why.
Another challenge is making the treatment more widely available. Precision immunotherapy is a complex and expensive treatment, and it’s not yet available at all cancer centers.
Precision immunotherapy is a promising new approach to treating cancer using the body’s immune system to attack cancer cells. It’s still an experimental treatment, but early results have been encouraging. While many challenges need to be addressed, the hope is that precision immunotherapy will continue to be developed and refined and become an important tool in the fight against cancer.