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Immunotherapy is a form of cancer treatment that involves the boosting of the body defense mechanisms to help fight cancer through stopping or slowing the growth of cancer cells, minimizing the spread of cancer to other body parts and assisting the immune system operates better when it comes to the destruction of cancer cells. The substances that are used in the introduction of immunotherapy are either made by the body or in the biology laboratories when the body is unable to facilitate such processes.
The use of immunotherapy as an alternative means of cancer treatment and control has proven positive in some cancer-related diseases while it has led to a back dragging in some diseases hence however much it has tested positive to most it still cannot be fully approved to be a medical process of treating cancer.
Over the years, cancer patients have been subjected to various methods of treatment with a virtue of having the disease eradicated from their body and those that can’t be treated at least get suppressed. But with the mutative nature of its antigens, the cancer patients haven’t been able to get proper medication since the disease has been able to learn the mechanisms by which the medications administered to the patients work hence it has been able to evade their attacks making the disease to thrive. As a result, pharmaceuticals went on with their research and came up with immunotherapy as another way of treating cancer. Some of the very first medications that were produced are; monoclinic antibodies, rituximab, and trastuzumab.
There are different types of immunotherapy. These include T cell therapy. The doctors introduce the laboratory made inhibitors to the checkpoints where blood frequently passes through hence making it easy for the introduced antibodies to contain and destroy the antigens. Every patient cancer has different T cell. It is through the T cell that medics have been able to learn to use the genetic information of the cancer patients to treat them through the adoptive cell transfer. The information contained in each patient T cell is later used to develop CARs in the laboratories via genetic engineering that corresponds to the antigens of the cancer patients (Smyth et al 2016). Multiple duplicates are produced and subjected to the patient’s body. Once there, the T cells are able to spot the antigens contained in the cancer cells hence making them induce an offensive immune response mechanism that will see the destruction of the antigens and the cancer cells thus leading to the suppression and eradication of cancer in patients.
The use of monoclonal antibodies is another method of immunotherapy that is used to treat cancer patients. The antibodies are able to identify cancer cells and the antigens established on them (Correale et al 2006). The monoclonal antibodies work as the normal antibodies and as a subordinate of immunotherapy it helps the body fight cancer in two different ways, one; it may catalyse the functioning of the immune system by anchoring themselves on the antigens found in cancer cells thus making it simple for the cells of the natural immune system to identify them and launch an attack on them through a process called antibody-dependent cell mediated cytotoxicity and two; it may aid the body’s natural immune system in attacking cancer cells and antigens.
Vaccines are also used as a form of immunotherapy to fight cancer. The vaccines do not prevent but fight cancer. The vaccines are made in the laboratory after several research related to various cancer diseases. When introduced to the body, the vaccines facilitate the activation of the natural immune system inspectorate that helps identify and fight antigens that cause diseases. The cancerous cells in the body have managed to be able to dodge the checkpoints in the body by reversing their actions hence being able to go through them with minimal disturbance. With the help of the vaccines; the immune system of the body will be resuscitated hence being able to subvert any kind abnormal actions that might be subjected to it hence helping fight and suppress cancer.
Immunotherapy is a new form of cancer treatment that is being introduced to the cancer patients. Many of the world’s medics are still not familiar with this method of treatment hence the need to come up with a protocol design that they will have to follow while administering the medication. The medics also need to be taken for special training in this field. This will help facilitate the spread of knowledge involving the administration of the various forms of immunotherapy to treat cancer.
Not all cancerous diseases are treatable by the use of immunotherapy hence the need to identify such patient has always been a problem to the doctors. The treatment is mostly in line with the biological information contained in the T cell of every patient. Though proper procedures for identifying such people hasn’t been established, it is advisable that the medic taking care of the patient do extensive research based on the nature of cancer the patient is suffering from and compare with the previous research to determine if the patient is treatable via immunotherapy.
As a subject of discussion, immunotherapy is divisible into two categories; passive and active immunotherapy. In passive immunotherapy, the positive feedback of antibodies and cytokines therapeutics shows a successful future and chances for improvement. Cell and antibody engineering among other forms of scientific researches for the treatment of cancer have facilitated the improvement of antibody efficiency while minimizing the high costs involved in the process of manufacturing.
Active immunotherapy has the lately accepted HPV vaccine championing the establishment of preventive vaccine to help in the prevention of other infectious illness (Huang et al 2010). At this level, reverse vaccinology can be used in the identification of immunogenic proteins that are pathogenic in nature. A process also called genomic process.
The induction of oncolytic viruses as an immunotherapy is also a means of controlling and eradicating cancer in cancerous patients. This virus has the ability to infect and kill cells and is developed and altered in the laboratories (Bernardes et al 2013). Apart from killing the cells on its own, the virus has the capability to notify the body’s immune system to launch an attack on the cancer cells. A sample of such viruses is talimogene laherparepvec. It has been recreated to produce GM-CSF which is a protein that empowers the immune system of the body. The protein is also believed to be able to cure melanomas that can’t be extracted via surgery. This is done through the direct introduction of it into the tumors for a period of at least every fortnight.
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The use of nonspecific immunotherapies is also another way of controlling and treating cancer. They do not majorly target the cancer cells but they help boost the body’s immune system thus making it capable for the body to defend itself against any form of attack apart from cancerous attacks alone. A lot of research is also still being done to help come up with many forms of immunotherapy that can help curb the problem of cancer that has been declared a world disaster.
Cancer leads to the depletion of body tissues since the disease thrives on consuming body cells and mounting itself on the various antibodies present in the body. There are many forms of cancer; ranging from prostate cancer to cervical cancer. It has a strong bacterial infection that overuses the body cells making them depleted and weak to faction hence moving to new cells that have not been used. Through this process, cancerous diseases move all over the body making it hard to be controlled through the earlier means of control which included radiotherapy. It is for this reason that the genetic engineers came up with immunotherapy as a method of controlling and getting rid of this deadly diseases.
The governments need to facilitate research programmes that are related to cancer in their various countries. This is due to the nature of the disease being dangerous and a world problem. This process will see another form of cancer treatments other than immunotherapy realized hence providing an option for treatment. Cancer antigens are known to have a mutative nature that enables them to evade the body defense mechanisms. This nature also helps them evade the effects of induced treatments that are introduced to the patient’s body hence through research we are able to bring a change to this through modification of the treatment methods that cannot be dodged by the antigens.
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- Bernardes, Nuno, Ananda M, Fialho & Arsenio M. (2013). Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology. Engineering of bacterial strains and their products for cancer therapy.