By MedicalNewsToday.com for SouthFloridaReporter.com, Aug 5, 2015 – Scientists are adding new DNA to the cells of patients in a world-first treatment to attack and kill melanoma skin cancers.
The new cell and gene therapy clinical trials have commenced in Adelaide, South Australia, led by Professor Michael Brown, Director of the Cancer Clinical Trials Unit at the Royal Adelaide Hospital and Research Officer Dr Tessa Gargett.
“Our own immune system doesn’t usually recognise tumours in our body as dangerous, because they are made from of our own bodily materials,” Dr Gargett said.
“So our white blood cells just pass by the tumours instead of attacking them as they would a foreign object – like a virus.
“We are reprogramming the DNA in patient’s white blood cells – called T cells – to identify the tumour as dangerous and hopefully destroy it.”