Then And Now: Mexican Immunotherapy
In most countries, one of the most prominent illnesses is cancer. Cancer is a deadly disease that has been studied for years. It happens when there is an uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in a specific part which eventually can spread throughout the body if not treated properly. These cells are most commonly identified as an individual’s old cells that grow and develop instead of dying out, resulting in the formation of such abnormal cells. Most bodies have a normal control mechanism but, due to the occurrence of the disease, it instantly stops. In most cases, these abnormal cells can grow in the form of excess tissue most commonly known as malignant tumors. However, it has been quite a tough battle for the medical field for years since up until this moment; there has been no found cure for the silent killer.
As years went by, several studies have been conducted to find the cure for this deadly illness. One of the treatments that have been prevalent in the past decades is immunotherapy. Immunotherapy is executed when a person’s own immune system is used to fight against cancer cells. As a matter of fact, our immune system helps us to fight against bodily infections and other cells that it finds unfamiliar. Technically, it allows our body to change its route in boosting our immune system to retaliate against cancer by attacking its cells. Moreover, immunotherapy works on a case-to-case basis depending on the type of cancer an individual has developed.
With this, immunotherapy treatment in Mexico has undergone a series of changes over the past years. Dated back to 2012, immunotherapy is conducted in the country of Mexico with the use of a drug named ipilimumab. In the year 2015, they started to use two different drugs named nivolumab and pembrolizumab. Patients who were treated through immunotherapy with the three formerly mentioned drugs were observed for six months, waiting for the adverse effects that it may cause in response to the treatment that was conducted. However, treatments with the use of these drugs were considered to be adversely impactful to some of the patients, although not all, since they have experienced longer hospital stays and mortality.
Just last 18th of August, an immunotherapy institute in Mexico was given the license to apply CAR T-Cells for cancer patients. It is said that the patient may be administered the CAR T-Cell within 72 hours. CAR T-Cell immunotherapy is done by modifying a patient’s T-Cell in the laboratory for it to successfully bind together the cancer cells and destroy them. Since 2015, doctors and medical workers under specific institutions in Mexico have been trying to find the best treatment for the deadly illness named cancer since the year 2015. Eventually, it took them almost seven years before they were given the license to administer the treatment that they consider the most influential one at the moment. According to the website of the Harvard Medical School, CAR T-Cells immunotherapy is a powerful mode of treatment for specific cancer types. However, it is not that much available for every patient who currently needs it due to the massive population of patients who are in demand for CAR T-Cells.
Seeing how the medical industry is still having a hard time finding an effective treatment for cancer that is inclusive to all, it is also difficult to digest the fact that there are numerous patients around the globe who are suffering due to this illness, doing their best to fight for their lives. Hence, in hopes of the advancements of science and technology in the coming years, we must have high hopes in relying upon and trusting the medical experts with regard to coming up with a treatment that has been searched for thousands of years.