From worms to cures

Emily B. Harrison, Ph.D Last month I attended the first RNA Therapeutics Conference held at University of Massachusetts Medical School. While I have attended several national conferences, this one beautifully encapsulated how basic science can lead to new drugs in only two decades. This conference inspired me to share with you the story of RNA…

Immune cells work together to enable successful cancer therapy

Morgan McSweeney A group of researchers from the University of California – San Francisco recently found that the presence of a certain group of immune cells in tumors (“stimulatory dendritic cells,” or SDCs) can predict better cancer outcomes, at least in melanoma patients. For example, in patients treated with checkpoint inhibitors (drugs that work by…

Stumbling before the beast: Not all cancer clinical trials end in drug approval

Manisit Das Since the beginning of OncoBites, we’ve talked a lot about immunotherapy: using our own immune cells to destroy the cancer cells? We can’t get enough of it! In one post, we highlighted a revolutionary approach recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) using genetically modified immune cells to fight cancer,…

Cancer-Curing Light

Sara Musetti The story of cancer is almost as old as the story of humans. As far back into ancient times as the 15th century BCE in Egypt, physicians have struggled to offer their patients any sort of relief from slowly spreading tumors. If tumors were visible to the naked eye–on the skin, breasts, neck,…