(RxWiki News) Most believe the only way to cure kidney cancer is through surgery. Yet, there are ways to slow down the spread of the disease. Now, researchers have found a sort of "smart-bomb" treatment to attack kidney cancer cells.
A specific kind of radioimmunotherapy (the use of radiation to target and kill harmful cells) slows down the spread of renal cell carcinoma, the most common type of kidney cancer among adults.
"Ask your doctor about the new kidney cancer treatment."
According to Wim Oyen, M.D., professor at Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, the study's findings represent another step forward in cancer treatment. This specific radioimmunotherapy - called Lu-177-cG250 - could become another option for patients in their fight against kidney cancer.
Lu-177-cG250 works by finding the antigen associated with renal cell carcinoma. Once it is inside the body, it targets the cancerous tissues with this antigen, and then kills the cancerous cells while leaving healthy tissue unharmed.
For their study, Oyen and colleagues looked at how radioimmunotherapy would affect 20 patients with progressive, metastasized (spread to other parts of the body) renal cell carcinoma. Each patient was given no more than three doses of Lu-177-cG250. The researchers then tested patients for toxicity and for how effective the treatment was.
At 12 weeks after treatment, this radioimmunotherapy stabilized kidney cancer in 14 out of 20 patients.
The average tumor growth rate dropped from a 28.5 percent increase in size before radioimmunotherapy to 4.1 percent in the three months following their first treatment.
Oyen says that his research team was able to stop kidney cancer from progressing in most of the cases. This hopefully extended patients lives while also not reducing their quality of life with serious side effects, he adds.