Possible Blood Cancer Breakthrough - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Possible Blood Cancer Breakthrough

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41-year-old Simone Le Calvez has undergone a range of treatments since she was diagnosed with Lymphoma in 2009.

And she suffered debilitating side effects.

Every year, 12,500 Australians are diagnosed with blood cancer.

But now, there's hope. "Chemo therapy generally works by damaging DNA withing our cells and then the cells die. This treatment is quite differnet. It turns off protein production within cells," says professor Grant McArthur of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

Tested on mice, it targets and kills the protein factories within cancer cells while having little impact on normal cells. "Animals tolerate the treatment other than some minor changes in their blood cell count."

During testing, side effects were minimal and cancer cells were eradicated within seven days.

Shying away from the term 'cured' doctors say it's effectively destroyed all forms of blood cancers including Lymphoma, Leukemia and Myeloma.

A team of 35 Melbourne researchers have spent the past seven years developing the treatment. And are hoping to have a clinical trial up and running by November. "Initially one patient will be treated at a time, and we'll be monitoring them very closely," says associate professor Simon Harrison of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

In years to come the treatment could be used for a range of cancers.

Two of the three key researchers are in Barcelona, Spain sharing the exciting breakthrough with the world.

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