Feeds

Scorpions deployed in cancer battle

Venom holds hope for sufferers

High performance access to file storage

A protein found in scorpion venom could lead to a new treatment for a particularly aggressive type of of brain cancer, according to new research.

Doctors have shown that a synthetic version of the protein attacks cancerous cells, but leaves normal brain matter untouched.

The study tracked the progress of 18 people who had had malignant gliomal tumours, a fatal form of cancer, removed from their brains. Their doctors then injected their brains with a solution containing a synthesised version of a protein found in the venom of the giant yellow Israeli scorpion, and radioactive iodine.

The life expectancy of people with this kind of cancer is usually a matter of months. However, two of the volunteers in the experiment were still alive almost three years later, Reuters reports.

The protein binds almost exclusively to cancerous cells. The researchers say that combined with chemotherapy it could be used to fight the disease. Animal research suggests that even without the radioactive component, the protein TM-601 could work to inhibit tumor growth on its own.

"Does that mean that the drug was miraculous? No," said Dr Adam Mamelak, a neurosurgeon at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. "But we have shown that it is safe and that we should at least move forward."

The findings were reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
Solar-powered aircraft unveiled for round-the-world flight
It's going to be a slow and sleepy flight for the pilots
Russian deputy PM: 'We are coming to the Moon FOREVER'
Plans to annex Earth's satellite with permanent base by 2030
LOHAN's Punch and Judy show relaunches Thursday
Weather looking good for second pop at test flights
Saturn spotted spawning new FEMTO-MOON
Icy 'Peggy' looks to be leaving the outer rings
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
India's GPS alternative launches second satellite
Closed satnav system due to have all seven birds aloft by 2016
Curiosity finds not-very-Australian-shaped rock on Mars
File under 'messianic pastries' and move on, people
Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully
Clandestine NRO spacecraft sets off on its unknown mission
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.