Mexican Doctors Seek to Combat Childhood Cancer with Salmonella

Mexican Doctors Seek to Combat Childhood Cancer with Salmonella

Potential breakthrough unconventional treatment of NLH and other forms of cancers in children.

Mexico – Oncology specialists at Children’s Hospital of Mexico Federico Gomez, is studying the Salmonella typhimurium bacteria responsible for eradicating tumor cells, to provide an alternative treatment for children with non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NLH).

More than 80 percent of this type of cancer achieves a survival at five years, with standard treatments, said Dr. Rosendo Luria Pérez, in an interview with the News Agency of The National Council of Science and Technology (CONACYT).

However, another 20 percent of the treatment fails due to various mechanisms of resistance to chemotherapy, therefore researcher Luria Pérez embarked on finding an alternative therapy to reverse this rejection to chemotherapy of tumor cells.

“In the resistant tumor cell, the mechanisms that govern programmed cell death are deregulated and so the cell does not die so easily.  Fortunately there is a way to reverse this process, “he said.

Blocking peptide molecules through promoting tumor cell sensitization to programmed cell death;  in addition, with the combination of these peptides and chemotherapy, the cells that resist treatment may die.

The challenge is to conduct research effectively and selectively with proapoptotic peptides to the tumor activity, making a live attenuated bacterial vector such as Salmonella typhimurium as carrier of these peptides will be used.

He said that if this proposal comes to clinical trials, they will use strain of salmonella which is much safer.  In the future, when they have made the last tests, they hope to provide the clinician with an alternative for patients who have resistance to chemotherapy.

The researcher said that he and his team will start the second phase with Salmonella typhimurium carted in mice xenografted with models peptides.

 “What we will do is build the tumor in mice and administering Salmonella. We hope that the tumor is reduced or eliminated and there is a better result when the chemotherapeutic agent would be added, “he said.

Perez said that this mechanism for removing tumor cells resistant to chemotherapy would not be limited to the treatment of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

So its application could be extended to other hematological malignancies such as acute lymphoblastic leukemia, one of the cancers most prevalent in children, as well as semi-solid and solid tumors afflicting children.


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