After 30 years a new weapon against melanoma!

After 30 years of failure, there is a new weapon effective against the most aggressive skin cancer, melanoma, and in Italy affects about 6,000 people each year and kills 1,500. He does not attack the tumor directly, but triggers the immune system. The results of experiments conducted in 125 centers worldwide and in which Italy has played an important role, were presented today at the Congress of the American Molecular Oncology (ASCO) being held in Chicago (Illinois). The molecule, called ipilimumab, reached its third phase of the trial. It is not a vaccine, but immunotherapy: “While a vaccine stimulates the immune system directly, this drug removes a block,” says the coordinator of the Italian branch of the study, Paul Ascierto, National Cancer Institute ‘Pascale’ Naples.
The molecule releases the molecular brake that normally stops the immune reaction at the right time. Consequently, the immune system are unleashed against any cancer cells. The results are considered so promising that in Italy, patients with advanced disease may have the drug for compassionate use (the top 20 in Naples). Some centers, finally, are testing the drug against cancer of the prostate and lung.

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Eli Wads is one of our expert authors in technology and business fields.Currently living in San Marino, Eli has graduated at Southwestern Academy with a Bachelor Degree in business in 2008. Contact him by dropping him an e-mail at

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