BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Roswell announced Tuesday it is launching a clinical trial on a vaccine designed to eradicate cancer cells and prevent a relapse of the disease.
The vaccine was developed at Roswell Park and will be manufactured there. The potential medical breakthrough is giving new hope to cancer patients.
Every year or two, somewhere in America there is a new experimental treatment for cancer introduced. This is one of them, but this seems to hold even more promise coming out of Roswell.
Roswell Park researchers went public with it Tuesday morning, a plan to take 20 cancer patients, remove some of their cells, inject those cells with a protein that makes the cells remember how to kill cancer cells, and put the cancer killing cells back in into the patients body.
Hospice Buffalo chief medical officer Dr. Christopher Kerr said, "There's a promise and hope that it'll be impactful."
Any hope is good at Hospice Buffalo where half of the patients are dying of cancer. Even if this discovery is effective, it comes too late to help most of these patients.
But James Carpenter is a rare case at Hospice. He's only undergoing pain treatment there. He is a cancer survivor after trying several experimental treatments, some good some bad. One of them left him paralyzed, but others saved his life.
"It's amazing that I'm still alive 'cause back in '89 when I lost my father, they really didn't know too much about cancer and I think that's one of the biggest reasons why he passed away," said Carpenter.
Dr. Kerr said, "And really, a lot of the hope and concerns of dying patient really shift from themselves to their children, to their grandchildren, so this isn't without meaning."
"I would suggest anybody out there that's willing to do treatment with anything with cancer go ahead and try different options. And keep fighting the battle and just have faith and sooner or later, they'll come up with a solution," assured Carpenter.
It is expected to be about two years before Roswell researchers know if this clinical trial works, and if it does it could be used on thousands of other patients starting in a couple years.
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