Advanced prostate cancer could be destroyed by a radical new prostate cancer treatment which combines chemotherapy with a boost to the immune system, research on mice shows. A new therapy that boosts the immune system could wipe advanced prostate cancer, early research suggests.In mice, human disease tumours were “almost completely destroyed” by the animals’ own immune systems, scientists said.The treatment, dubbed “chemoimmunotherapy”, involved low doses of the drug oxaliplatin which has a unique ability to activate cancer-killing immune cells.
The immunosuppressive “B-cells” are especially abundant in the tumours of men who have advanced and spreading prostate cancer.Such cells can render conventional therapies ineffective and allowing tumours to grow unchecked.Because of immunosuppression, advanced and aggressive prostate cancer does not typically respond to chemotherapy.
While early Prostate Cancer treatment is often highly successful, there are few options for men with aggressive drug-resistant prostate cancer that has started to spread.B-cells play a number of vital immune system roles, including the production of antibodies. Sometimes they also signal the immune system to slow down when it is getting overheated.In the context of cancer, this can have undesirable consequences, researchers writing in the journal Nature said.
Earlier this week Canadian research found prostate cancer sufferers treated with tiny radioactive implants are twice as likely to be cancer-free as those given conventional therapy after five years.Scientists behind the first ever trial comparing low-dose brachytherapy with any other form of radiation said there was a “large advantage” to the implants, in terms of survival.However, the research found that men given the treatment – which involves permanently implanted radioactive “seeds” – suffered more severe side-effects, such as urinary problems.