Feeds

Scorpions deployed in cancer battle

Venom holds hope for sufferers

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

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. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
GRAV WAVE DRAMA: 'Big Bang echo' may have been grit on the scanner – boffins
Exit Planet Dust on faster-than-light expansion of universe
SpaceX Dragon cargo truck flies 3D printer to ISS: Clawdown in 3, 2...
Craft berths at space station with supplies, experiments, toys
That glass of water you just drank? It was OLDER than the SUN
One MEELLION years older. Some of it anyway
Big dinosaur wowed females with its ENORMOUS HOOTER
That's right, Doris, I've got biggest snout in the prehistoric world
Japanese volcano eruption reportedly leaves 31 people presumed dead
Hopes fade of finding survivors on Mount Ontake
Relive the death of Earth over and over again in Extinction Game
Apocalypse now, and tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that ...
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.