A team of Israeli scientists belonging to a company called the Accelerated Evolution Biotechnologies (AEBi) have claimed to be at a stage where they can find a cure for cancer within a year. The therapy is being developed under the leadership of the CEO of AEBi, Dr. Ilan Morad.
Dan Aridor, chairman of AEBi in a statement said, “We believe we will offer in a year’s time a complete cure for cancer. Our cancer cure will be effective from day one, will last a duration of a few weeks and will have no or minimal side-effects at a much lower cost than most other treatments on the market.” The treatment, the team is developing is called MuTaTo short for “multi-target toxin”. The principle of this treatment is a combination of cancer-targeting peptides or proteins along with a toxin that can kill the cancer cells specifically.
Dr. Morad in a statement said that this new treatment would soon be tailor-made to individual needs based on their cancer type. According to statistics from the International Agency for Research on Cancer, every six death around the world is caused by cancer and there are 18.1 million new cases of cancer detected each year around the world. This means that the new treatment, if proven true, could benefit millions say experts.
Dr. Morad explained that the team has successfully completed animal trials with the new drug and have treated laboratory mice with cancers. They found that the treatment affected and killed only the cancer cells and did not affect healthy cells of the body. They have also successfully completed in-vitro tests in the lab with encouraging results. The team is all set to start on human clinical trials that could be completed within the next few years. After approval the drug could be available for use in cancer explain the team of researchers.
The team explains that their treatment is multi-pronged and it attacks the cancer cells in multiple ways. Dr. Morad said in a statement, “We made sure that the treatment will not be affected by mutations; cancer cells can mutate in such a way that targeted receptors are dropped by the cancer.” The probability of having multiple mutations that would modify all targeted receptors simultaneously decreases dramatically with the number of targets used…Instead of attacking receptors one at a time, we attack receptors three at a time.
Not even cancer can mutate three receptors at the same time,” he explained. He said most of the existing cancer drugs fail because they do not kill the stem cells of the cancer that can give rise to more and the cancer tends to come back. “If it does not completely annihilate the cancer, the remaining cells can start to get mutations again, and then the cancer comes back, but this time it is drug resistant,” he said speaking of the existing anti-cancer drugs.
Experts have taken the news with a pinch of salt and wait for more peer reviewed studies and evidence before such claims could be believed to be true. Till then the scientific community believes, that if this treatment could actually work, it would be revolutionary in cancer management and further research.
Len Lichtenfeld, MD, chief medical officer of the ACS, in a statement said, “It goes without saying, we all share the aspirational hope that they are correct. Unfortunately, we must be aware that this is far from proven as an effective treatment for people with cancer, let alone a cure.” He added, “Our hopes are always on the side of new breakthroughs in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. We are living in an era where many exciting advances are impacting the care of patients with cancer.
"We hope that this approach also bears fruit and is successful. At the same time, we must always offer a note of caution that the process to get this treatment from mouse to man is not always a simple and uncomplicated journey.
As experience has taught us so many times, the gap from a successful mouse experiment to effective, beneficial application of exciting laboratory concepts to helping cancer patients at the bedside is in fact a long and treacherous journey, filled with unforeseen and unanticipated obstacles,” Lichtenfeld warned.