Breakthrough technology to fight cancer was invented in Russia
Breakthrough technology to fight cancer was invented in Russia
Anonim

The news published below is certainly important and interesting. There is only one thing but … In whose hands will such a tool for changing the type of "Homo sapiens" be found? This is perhaps the main question.

However, there is another question: under capitalism, when profit is the main goal of corporations that hire scientists to develop new technologies, under these conditions, are the possible side effects on the health of future generations sufficiently investigated?

A technology for reprogramming lymphocytes for fast and effective treatment of diseases has been created in Russia.

First of all, it is planned to use it to fight cancer, and in the future it will be able to replace the usual medicines for other diseases, in particular, for many infectious diseases.

The head of the laboratory of mechanisms of regulation of immunity of the National Medical Research Center of Oncology named after V.I. Blokhin of the Ministry of Health of Russia, Professor Dmitry Kazansky.

What is the "Transgen" project?

Image

Dmitry Kazansky: The Transgen project was carried out by the Prospective Research Foundation from 2015 to 2018, although the groundwork is based on research that my colleagues and I have been doing for 20 years.

We were faced with the task of creating a fast and effective remedy for the body's immune response. As you know, the immune system always takes a certain time to produce the necessary lymphocytes. This process usually takes several days or even weeks.

At the same time, it is known that some viral diseases develop and proceed quickly and do not allow the body to form an immune response. For example, the same Ebola. We decided to try to immediately create lymphocytes with the necessary receptors. Technically, this is a feasible task.

So, we are talking about the creation of artificial immunity?

Dmitry Kazansky: You can say so, that is, so that the body passes the phase of the formation of an immune response and receives it immediately by artificial means.

Happened?

Dmitry Kazansky: Yes, the possibility of implementing such a technology has been shown. A large volume of preclinical studies was carried out on the line of experimental mice that had an experimental model tumor.

In the presence of modified lymphocytes, their body coped with the tumor very quickly. If ordinary mice developed an immune response within 10-12 days, then the organism of transgenic mice rejected the tumor in 3-4 days. We decided to use this effect against infections. We managed to get immunity to salmonella, listeria - murine pathogens that usually lead to fatal diseases.

Now the methodological developments obtained and patented by the Foundation for Advanced Research are used at the National Medical Research Center of Oncology named after V.I. Blokhin in the framework of further work. The creation of biomedical cell products began, that is, directly drugs that would treat people.

When will the treatment sample be created?

Dmitry Kazansky: These are foreseeable periods, I think, years.

What diseases can transcoded lymphocytes be used against?

Dmitry Kazansky: We are talking about oncological diseases.

Will it be a universal cure for cancer?

Dmitry Kazansky: There are no universal medicines.Oncology is hundreds of different diseases, which most often have an individual character. And the methods of treatment directly depend on this.

How is the lymphocyte reflashing mechanism itself implemented?

Dmitry Kazansky: Human blood is taken, lymphocytes are separated from other cells, then artificial viral constructs are used to introduce the necessary genes into lymphocytes. The process takes only a few days. After that, the modified lymphocytes are injected back into the body and you immediately get a person with a formed immunological defense.

Do you need to change genes in lymphocytes personally for each patient?

Dmitry Kazansky: Personally. At the same time, due to the short life of lymphocytes, the introduction of such a "vaccine without vaccines" will need to be carried out from time to time to maintain the immune response.

Considering that some diseases are lightning-fast in nature, and it takes several days to make changes to the lymphocyte genes, maybe you should immediately think about creating a bank of leukocytes for each resident of the country?

Dmitry Kazansky: Naturally. To speed up the process, genetic data banks can be created for many pathogens.

Will it be possible to use the developments in the future to combat other diseases?

Dmitry Kazansky: If the ban on human genetic modification is ever overcome, then humanity will get rid of hereditary diseases. Sooner or later, we must learn how to treat them. How to learn how to treat them? Only by genetic modifications of the organism or by achieving a temporary effect by the introduction of modified cells of the organism with certain genes. It will be possible to save humanity from herpes, to interrupt the chain of transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus or hepatitis B.

Can we expect that in the long term, instead of going to the pharmacy, a person will inject himself with lymphocytes already programmed to treat a specific disease?

Dmitry Kazansky: In the future, yes, but now it's too early to aim at this. It is hard to imagine that we would start treating with such lymphocytes the common cold, adenovirus infection or even the flu. But the treatment of some especially life-threatening pathologies should be started in this way right now.

Will such technology make vaccinations and antibiotics meaningless in the future?

Dmitry Kazansky: Not yet. The flu shot is a proven technology, cheap. Our technology will also become cheaper, but it is unlikely to be as cheap as the vaccine.

How can Transgena technologies be used in other areas?

Dmitry Kazansky: You can make a pig that is resistant to African swine fever, and it is guaranteed to receive a monument from livestock breeders during its lifetime.

Are such works being carried out abroad? Are we ahead or lagging behind in these works?

Dmitry Kazansky: They are underway. In some ways we are ahead, in some they are. They are, perhaps, ahead in the creation and use of T-cell receptors. We have more advanced algorithms for their search, which allow us to intensify and speed up the work with obtaining the necessary biomedical drugs for treatment.

What attracted the FPI in your project in the first place, given that the fund deals with issues of the country's defense capability?

Dmitry Kazansky: Everything that has a medical application, everything related to immunology, necessarily refers to defense. In the modern world, we have to deal with new types of microorganisms, to resist the threat of bioterrorism. Our technology is part of the country's defense strategy.

How can Transgen be used to counter bioterrorism?

Dmitry Kazansky: If information appears about the threat of infection, then the contingent of people who will directly work in the focus of infections are injected with altered lymphocytes to protect their organisms. This is a kind of accelerated vaccination process.

Cancer treatment technology has great commercial potential. Have any commercial companies already reached out to you?

Dmitry Kazansky: Not yet. So far, businessmen have limited interest in this project due to various reasons, primarily due to the fact that it is necessary to once again prove the safety and effectiveness of the technology in a series of preclinical studies on model animals according to the rules adopted in the Russian Federation.

But I think when the technology shows all its safety and effectiveness, the interest will be great.

Popular by topic