Using the Immune System to Fight Cancer

In past years, cancer was simply treated with chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation therapy. Now, more scientists are noticing that the immune system has a lot to do with a patient recovering from cancer. The idea that the immune system could help decrease cancer growth was first identified in 1893.

An article (1) was written looking into the benefits of the immune system in fighting cancer. They noted that this is a field of research that is just getting underway as scientists uncover exactly how the immune system can be harnessed to fight off cancer cells.

The article indicated that monoclonal antibodies directed at tumor cells could effectively cause the immune system to recognize the tumor as being foreign so that it can cause the death of the cancer cells. More research needs to be done on many different types of cancer to see if similar effects can be gotten in other cancer types.

Source: 1.Yang Y. Cancer immunotherapy: harnessing the immune system to battle cancer. J Clin Invest. 2015;125(9):3335–3337.

Dr. Adem Gunes