Monday, April 2, 2012

Cancer Stem Cell Vaccine In Development

When the word vaccine is used, many people immediately correlate it with diseases such as tuberculosis and the flu. Cancer on the other hand, is more commonly associated with being a condition rather than a disease, when in fact it is. All healthy cells undergo a process called "apoptosis" when they have reached the end of their life cycle, which destroys the cell. Caner cells do not undergo apoptosis and as a result they grow out of control which causes mass buildups of cells known as tumors. This lack of a cells ability to undergo apoptosis constitutes the condition as a cellular disease which, may be curable with a vaccine

Scientists have been able to isolate pure cancer stem cells and generate a vaccine that strengthens the bodies immune response to such cells. The objective of the vaccine is to strengthen antibodies and T cells, and to increase their response in the event of a cancerous cell buildup. Despite being called "stem cells" these cancer cells are a separate branch and are distinct from embryonic stem cells, which only helps the development of this vaccine when it boils down to the morality of the situation.

Doctor Qiao Li PhD. of the University of Michigan has observed the effectiveness of this vaccine first hand. Li has stated the the immunological response of the antibodies and T cells increased dramatically after the administration of said vaccine. The antibodies were able to detect the cancerous cells much more effectively and seek out and destroy them once detected.

Currently the testing is still in the realm of lab rats and cell cultures, but the results look promising. The most optimistic factor of this development, is that it just one of many of its kind that are rapidly emerging. Could science be on the verge of a cure for cancer in not just one method, but many? Only human trial results will tell; as for now the developing methods are proving to be more than promising.

- Jeff Keating (2)


  1. This is awesome, great article by the way. It's great to see that we are finding new ways to get rid of cancer and getting closer to the final cure.

    Posted by Khoa Chu

  2. Great article! It is amazing to hear that vaccines such as this which could eliminate cancer cells are on their way to success. Having witnessed loved ones experienece the horror of this disease, recieving chemo and surgery it would be amazing to have a working vaccine that could eliminate cancer once and for all. Hopefully research like this will continue and one day soon, there will finally be a cure for cancer, the disease that kills too many.

  3. Great article. The topic of finding the cure for cancer is always current ad I'm glad to see some progress is actually being made. I also liked how this topic tied in with my blog last week about the avatar mice. With those mice, doctors would be able to test this vaccine and other subsequent cures on a mouse rather than the human being first. The possibility of being able to cure and possibly prevent cancer with a vaccine is amazing. Can't wait to follow this and see where it goes.

    Posted By Erica Bonnell(1)

  4. I always love to hear news about research on cancer, and how they are a step closer to finding a cure. I mean, I've relatives with cancer so I could really see first hand the suffering and discomfort they have to go through to fight this illness. Hopefully in the next few years a cure with be found, and no one has to go through such a life threatening ordeal anymore.

    -Hermann Kam

  5. This is spectacular news! Everybody loves to hear about breakthough's in cancer research. Cancer takes so many lives these days. Your blog moved nicely and was easy to understand. I hope to read more about the particular subject.

    Posted by Jen Silva (3)

  6. Well, considering that cancer can be caused by many different mutations, its is likely that different cancer cells might need a different vaccines.

    I also agree completely about your point on the morality of the vaccine. Cancer cells are not a fetus, (they can never become a fetus because they will not differentiate) so any controversy about stem cells shouldn't come up.

    Nice blog by the way. We've come a long way since the days now one even knew what was cancer. Now we are on our way to a potential cure.

    Posted by Joseph Frimpong

  7. Awesome! Cancer research is such an important thing in this day and age. Cancer seems like one of the final frontiers of medicine, every step we take towards its end is a step toward better living.

    Mike Selden (3)