Fighting Cancer with Immunotherapy

Humans have devoted endless hours and immeasurable efforts to find a solution for cancer. Cancer has become one of the leading causes of death in many countries today. No matter how wealthy or healthy you might think you are, it always has a surprising way of taking its toll on you. However, decades of research have also produced excellent results in finding ways on how to prevent, minimize, and even survive cancer. Those researches open a new glimpse of hope to those who are suffering and those who are in line for being affected with that disease.

Aside from radiation therapy, surgery, and chemotherapy, there is another kind of treatment that has been discovered and has already helped cancer warriors to step up their battle and even win it over. This treatment is termed as immunotherapy and is coined as biologic therapy. It has gotten its name by the way it fights cancer. This treatment uses your body’s defense mechanism to naturally stop and slow down the growth and spreading of cancer cells. Let us see how it works.

How Immunotherapy Fights Cancer

Outstandingly, our body was designed with an immune system that acts as our body defense mechanism against foreign conditions. It can recognize or identify invaders and acts to counteract them and do all its best to eliminate that invader from our system.

However, cancer cells try to outwit our defense system by blending into the background so that it would not be easy to identify and escape expulsion. Immunotherapy educates our immune system and helps it to identify the enemy. What is more beneficial about this is that it only identifies bad cells and avoid damaging the good ones, unlike other treatments. It strengthens our immune system as well, so it is more ready to fight harder battles against cancer. Since it is a general term for a number of treatments, it is broken down into several types:

Adoptive T-cell Therapies – This uses T-lymphocytes either from the tumor, the cancer area or an engineered white blood cell to combat cancer cells. This kind of treatment has been proven to be effective in some cases of leukemia and is being developed to treat other types of cancer.

Checkpoint InhibitorThis has proven to be effective in patients suffering from lung, bladder, and other types of cancer. It is using the immune system’s control mechanism which prevents autoimmunity. Our system has checkpoints that serve as stoppers to any possibility of destruction of good cells. These checkpoints are often intercepted by the cancer cells and forced to identify themselves as among the group of the good cells. The inhibitors stop this kind of operation of the immune system so it would be able to detect cancer cells and be able to tell them apart from the good ones. Still, there are severe side effects of this therapy because it affects the whole immune system.

Those are only two of the many different treatments under immunotherapy. You need to see a specialist first before deciding which immunotherapy treatment you should take. What is important is that you take the necessary steps to treat cancer as soon as possible because it can grow and spread fast. Act now and don’t wait for the worst to happen.