Cancer, Leukemia, MD discussed on Science for the People


Not. My answer is yes I will take it also because there is a twenty four percent chance that I will be alive in five years with chemotherapy. The question is why is that the only thing being offered? Why is that the only choice I would have? And why is that terrible choice being repeatedly given and how to do better going forward so yes? I think that there has been Concentration on early detection but North Enough. We need more resources. We need now. That more technology has become available. We need to have a completely different approach. Are there some ideas out there? About what type of approaches we should be focusing more on than we are now when to begin with we have to get away from reductionist approach that has been always used in the beginning. We felt that they be one gene producing abner abnormal protein. That can be targeted with one magic bullet and we'd find a cure and LO and behold. It turned out to be correct because Right after this approach was started we did discover that didn't very potentially lethal and aggressive kind of. Up Mia that evolves from Something called Chronic myeloid leukemia which getting become acute and we'll the universally. Fatal illness was found that this particular type of U. P. Chronic myeloid leukemia or C. L. is caused by one genetic do defect and the Drug Matt and that was developed to target that cure. It so it's basically curing it now at this was a great success but then it also has put her feedback by twenty years because basically everyone zoomed then that each answer would have the same one problem one treatment Kind of issue and all we have to do is find the gene that has malfunctioned in pancreatic cancer or lung cancer and targeted. It turned out that there is a soon Nami of genetic mutations that most of the cancer that they are not caused by one and if you think about chronic myeloid leukemia the same drug matinee which is curing chronic myeloid leukemia patients. Today is useless when the disease it bounces to even accelerated phase or an acute phase so in other words you're catching that you earliest form in the chronic phase and treating it right there. That's what I was hoping to do with. Md and treated the MD stage and not not let it develop into acute myeloid leukemia. Unfortunately turned out for me that more. Mda's by itself is very can be a very malignant and very complex disease and there is no single genetic abnormality that can be targeted like in chronic myeloid leukemia. So that has been really the issue that we are. We have used a kind of reductionist approach so what should be the next. The next step is let's get away from trying to find cancers by using ancient technology in this day and age of imaging and scanning techniques that are so efficient and so we have to be able to develop Better ways of finding early cancer. And what I'm saying is instead of using reductionist approach trying to find one gene that school for pluralist stick approach which means stubby whole cells that are cancerous there are innate the DNA their protein their metabolites that they are producing studied them repeatedly studied them in all kinds of secretions blood. Sweat tears urine stool everywhere. Essentially treat the human body as Dr Sam Gambhir from the Canary Cancer Center at Stanford says treat the human body as if it is a machine and Gone Stanley monitored for appearance of the footprints of cancer. This is what we need to have a really Pluralistic approach using not one test to diagnose cancer early like a mammogram article or no Skopje or a PSA but rather using all the latest sophisticated things even if it means two hundred points of information needs to be generated. That's what we have to generate. And that's how we will find cancer before it becomes clinically step wished. I remember reading through the book. And it's I sort of knew this already but I felt like I didn't really appreciate it in the same way I do now Which is your analogy of seed in soil with cancer and also the idea that cancer is so complex and so different from person to person that one of the biggest challenges for treatments especially he wants cancer gets into its later stages is that it different treatments work for different people are mostly. Don't work for different people and we aren't actually doing a great job in tracking what treatments might be better for what types of people with the quote unquote same cancers and that. I found really surprising that we're not trying to figure out which treatments that may be. Have a twenty percent. Efficacy rate are more likely to work. For which twenty percent of people if that makes sense? I found that really surprising that we're not doing a better job of of tracking and trying to at least target some of those treatments better completely. Unconscionable imagine that we are doing clinical trials today more than ninety percents. Unical trials that are done today for cancer or done in the same exact way that they were done in nineteen seventy seven just given to everybody see the thirty percent responded and get the drug approved without making any attempt to try and understand what these thirty percent responded and why and why aren't they institutions. Were supposed to protect us. Not doing anything to demand that sponsors of those trials make some attempt when the stand because imagine when you give the drug to a hundred patients. Seventy not respond. Which means they're getting the drugs for no reason at all. They're going to be physically and financially suffering all the talk society that comes along with no benefit at all for the sake of the thirty percent who will benefit for a short time basically month so I know experimental. Trials are a very. It's how a lot of medicine is done An in particular with cancer at feels like a lot of people are more willing to jump into experimental trials of all types. Because a like you say. There's this mixture of hope and despair. You you'll try just about anything because you want to. You want to keep living. But they're they're often challenges there because patients who are selected for experimental. Trials aren't necessarily representative of the types of patients who are more likely to get these kinds of cancers and so you end up with kind of sometimes skewed results in these trials that when you take those treatments that even appear to have maybe a thirty percent efficacy which isn't great but I guess at something and then move them into a general population. You find even like smaller numbers because you. It's just the trial groups just aren't reflective of the actual population who who's experiencing these these diseases absolutely right and let's not forget that ninety five percents ninety five percents of canceled experimental. Trials failed today the five percent. That succeed in my opinion should have fairy because they're only prolonging survival by a few months for a fraction.

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