Breakthroughs

Breakthroughs 2011-03-02T14:42:13+00:00


Breakthroughs In Reach
There is general agreement among scientists that progress in the development of childhood cancer treatments has reached a plateau. Many oncologists believe that targeted therapies are the most promising hope for improved cure rates for cancer. They believe that to be more effective and less harmful, treatments must be unique to the genetics of each individual patient and each type of cancer.

CURRENT CANCER TREATMENTS ARE UNIFORM:
Current cancer treatments are very uniform – people with the exact same type and stage of cancer usually receive similar treatments.   

BUT, CANCERS ARE DIVERSE ON A CELLULAR LEVEL:
However, through molecular research, scientists have determined that many cancers – though appearing to be of the same type – are quite diverse on a genetic or cellular level.  This breakthrough in genetic research has created the potential for individualized cancer treatment.   

THE IDEAL TREATMENT TARGETS ONLY CANCER CELLS:
Chemotherapy slows the growth of cancerous cells or eradicates them.  While chemotherapy can be effective in the short-term, it damages healthy cells along with cancerous cells. The ideal treatment eliminates cancer cells but spares unaffected cells.   

TARGETED TREATMENTS PROMISE TO BE MORE EFFECTIVE AND LESS HARMFUL:
Targeted cancer therapies, sometimes called “molecular-targeted drugs,” interfere with specific molecules involved in carcinogenesis (the process by which normal cells become cancer cells) and tumor growth.  By focusing on molecular and cellular changes that are specific to a cancer, targeted therapies promise to be more effective than current treatments and less harmful to normal cells.

TARGETED THERAPY IS ALREADY BEING RESEARCHED FOR ADULTS:
Most targeted cancer therapies are in preclinical testing (research with animals), but some are in clinical trials (on patients) or have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration.  Targeted cancer therapies are being studied for use alone, in combination with each other, and in combination with other cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy.

TARGETED THERAPY SUCCESS STORY– GLEEVEC:
While science is at the early stages of developing targeted therapies, there have been some remarkable breakthroughs already giving scientists much hope.  One such success story involves the drug Gleevec which is a “small-molecule”drug that blocks specific enzymes involved in cancer cell growth.  Gleevec has been approved by the FDA to treat gastrointestinal stromal tumor and certain kinds of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). Visit http://www.gleevec.com for details.

TARGETED THERAPY WILL BENEFIT CHILDREN DURING AND AFTER TREATMENT:
Our vision at I Care I Cure is that with targeted treatments, children will greatly benefit in the short and long terms.  During treatment, they WON’T lose their hair (and dignity), they won’t lose their immunities so they can stay in school and continue to enjoy their friendships that are key to normal social and emotional development.  Without healthy white-cell destruction, children will be able to fight off colds and viruses and, most importantly, survive the treatment. We want them to get through treatment without the pain and suffering that society has come to expect and accept with cancer treatment.

After treatment, targeted therapies will also drastically improve “survival”. Children who survive cancer treatment will have far fewer long-term health disabilities and can live long, normal, happy and healthy lives.

Our vision at I Care I Cure is that with targeted treatments, children will greatly benefit in the short and long terms.

During treatment, they won’t lose their hair, they won’t lose their immunities so they can stay in school and continue to enjoy their friendships that are key to normal social and emotional development.  Without healthy white-cell destruction, children will be able to fight off colds and viruses and, most importantly, survive the treatment.

After treatment, targeted therapies will also drastically improve childens’ lives. Children who survive cancer treatment will have far fewer long-term health disabilities and can live long, normal, happy and healthy lives.    

In other words, we want them to get through treatment without the pain and suffering that society has come to expect and accept with cancer treatment.