White Dog and The White Dog Army
Wonderful World Wednesday
It hasn't seemed like such a wonderful world lately as dear friends from our blogging community have been taken from us by cancer; it has been easy to feel that we are losing too many too soon and that the monster is winning the war. News of Claudette's passing was particularly hard to accept gracefully; the White Dog Army wanted to rage and rail about the unfairness of it all. And we did for several days.
Today, White Dog came to the group and suggested that a better tribute to the brave Warrior and Wonderful Woman would be to share news of an advance where we are WINNING the battle and gaining a reason to hope. Claudette would, we are certain, be thrilled to know others may be spared what she so stoically endured. Together let us celebrate the miracle of human ingenuity and determination. Let us imagine a a wonderful world where cancer.touches.no one.
Tiny Oxygen Generators Boost Effectiveness
of Anticancer Treatment
Emil Venere, Purdue University
You may read this press release in its original location on the Purdue University website: www.purdue.edu/newsroom/research/2011
Researchers have created and tested miniature devices that are implanted in tumors to generate oxygen, boosting the killing power of radiation and chemotherapy. The technology is designed to treat solid tumors that are hypoxic at the center, meaning the core contains low oxygen levels.
"This is not good because radiation therapy needs oxygen to be effective," said Babak Ziaie, a Purdue University professor of electrical and computer engineering and biomedical engineering. "So the hypoxic areas are hard to kill. Pancreatic and cervical cancers are notoriously hypoxic. If you generate oxygen you can increase the effectiveness of radiation therapy and also chemotherapy."
The new "implantable micro oxygen generator" is an electronic device that receives ultrasound signals and uses the energy to generate a small voltage to separate oxygen and hydrogen from water - a chemical operation called water electrolysis. "We are putting these devices inside tumors and then exposing the tumors to ultrasound," Ziaie said. "The ultrasound energy powers the device, generating oxygen.
Researchers have tested the devices in pancreatic tumors implanted in mice, showing they generated oxygen and shrunk tumors faster than tumors without the devices. The devices are slightly less than one centimeter long and are inserted into tumors with a hypodermic biopsy needle.
"Most of us have been touched by cancer in one way or another," Ziaie said. "My father is a cancer survivor, and he went through many rounds of very painful chemotherapy. This is a new technology that has the potential to improve the effectiveness of such therapy."
A patent application has been filed for the design. Future work may focus on redesigning the device to make it more practical for manufacturing and clinical trials.
A new approach, a new way to beat the monster...now that is wonderful news.