Friday, December 16, 2011

A UGA professor might've cured cancer

Posted By on Fri, Dec 16, 2011 at 4:02 PM

Geert-Jan Boons (!!!), a University of Georgia chemistry professor and certified genius (I don't actually know if this is true) has, with the help of Mayo Clinic researchers, developed a vaccine that just might cure cancer.

From UGA's newswire:

Researchers from the University of Georgia and the Mayo Clinic in Arizona have developed a vaccine that dramatically reduces tumors in a mouse model that mimics 90 percent of human breast and pancreatic cancer cases-including those resistant to common treatments.

The vaccine, described this week in the early edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reveals a promising new strategy for treating cancers that share the same distinct carbohydrate signature, including ovarian and colorectal cancers. The vaccine dramatically reduced the size of tumors in laboratory mice and was particularly successful against breast and pancreatic tumors, two of the deadliest forms of cancer, the researchers reported.

...

Boons, [Mayo Clinic researcher Sandra] Gendler, and their colleagues are currently testing the vaccine's effectiveness against human cancer cells in culture and are planning to assess its toxicity. If all goes well, they anticipate that phase I clinical trials to test the safety of the vaccine could begin by late 2013.

This seems like a really big deal, but all I can think about are mouse models with human breasts.

In the study he co-authored, Boons says, "This vaccine elicits a very strong immune response. It activates all three components of the immune system to reduce tumor size by an average of 80 percent."

If maybe curing cancer wasn't enough, Boons also founded a biotech company in Athens that could eventually manufacture the vaccine and also create jobs. Someone's gonna have a braggy holiday newsletter.

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