Thursday, 25 June 2009

Trail Blazer

It seems like an age since Monday (although its only four days) but at long last we have received details of the drug trial Steve has been offered. 

Velcade (Bortezomib) is a biological therapy for treating cancer which works by inhibiting the growth of cancer cells.  

This is an extract from the cancerbackup website which explains how it works:

Proteosomes are a group of enzymes found in all cells in the body. They have an important role in controlling cell function and growth. By interfering with how proteosomes work, Velcade may cause cancer cells to die and may stop the cancer from growing. Cancer cells are more sensitive to the effects of Velcade than normal cells.

Up to now, Velcade has been mainly used to treat myeloma - a cancer which affects the bone marrow's ability to produce normal white and red blood cells and blood platelets.  Due to its success in targeting myeloma cells, researchers are looking at how effective it is when used to treat other types of cancer - which is where Steve comes in...

Like all drugs, Velcade has side effects.  However, it seems to us that taking a drug which specifically targets cancer cells in this way is worth a shot.  So that's the plan.  

We've yet to see the treatment programme, but when that's available we hope to be in a position to sort out our social/travel/ activity arrangements around it.  Will keep you posted!

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