STANFORD, Calif. — Researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine say a cancer treatment experiment was shown to eliminate all traces of cancer in 87 of 90 mice.
The study says this approach could work for many types of cancer and provide a rapid and relatively inexpensive cancer therapy.
It’s also unlikely to cause adverse side effects often seen with other immune stimulation, according to researchers.
Researchers injected tiny amounts of two immune-stimulating agents into the mice’s tumors, leading to the “complete obliteration” of cancerous cells.
The vaccine worked on laboratory mice with transplanted mouse lymphoma tumors in two sites on their bodies.
When scientists injected one tumor site, they found tumors in the second, untreated site also went away.
The researchers said they saw similar results in mice with breast, colon and melanoma tumors.
“When we use these two agents together, we see the elimination of tumors all over the body,” said Ronald Levy, professor of oncology.
“This approach bypasses the need to identify tumor-specific immune targets and doesn’t require wholesale activation of the immune system or customization of a patient’s immune cells.”
Researchers said they plan a clinical trial to test the treatment in 15 human patients who have low-grade lymphoma.
If successful, Levy said the treatments could eventually eliminate the need for surgery to remove tumors.
“I don’t think there’s a limit to the type of tumor we could potentially treat, as long as it has been infiltrated by the immune system,” Levy said.