Cancer Kryptonite Case Study

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Cancer Kryptonite: Using Deadly Disease to Cure Deadly Disease
After reviewing the study of the effects of chimeric antigen receptor-modified T cells (CAR T-cells) on acute lymphocytic leukemia, it appears that this type of treatment shows promise for the treatment of this and many other difficult-to-kill cancers. This technique was pioneered and developed by Dr. Carl June. He began his research on T cells in the late 1980s to early 1990s while in the Navy. The research he would do and the other researchers he would meet at this time would pave the way for what could be considered to be groundbreaking cancer research today. What started as the study of T cells and their relationship with the HIV virus specifically, would turn into the
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to recognize a “self” cell from a “non-self” cell,
2. mount a successful response/attack,
3. remember each specific pathogen/antigen for future attacks.
To be able to recognize a “self” cell from a “non-self” cell, T cells have receptors on their surfaces that recognize antigens on the surfaces of other cells. When one of these antigens, or parts of the disease that the immune system recognizes as “non-self”, is recognized by a T cell, an immune response is launched and T cells begin multiplying rapidly to fight off the infection. This rapid multiplication creates two different types of T cells: helper and cytotoxic. The helper T cells help to create more T cells and the cytotoxic T cells are the killers. They attack the cells with the antigen that the body has recognized as “non-self.” Once the “non-self” cells are destroyed, some of these new T cells that have been created to fight off this specific infection will stay around to fight any future infection with the same antigen. This is called “memory” (Dr. T. White, Microbiology lecture, May 2015). Dr. June and his team have based their research on this immune response, but with an interesting twist. The research conducted by Dr. June while in the Navy taught him plenty about the efficiency the HIV virus possesses in DNA delivery and about the response of T cells to disease. He would use this knowledge, and the knowledge of his peers, to perfect for the first time the procedure he would use in
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