In a Central Sweden laboratory, mankind's answer to life-stealing cancer is being subjected to a serious study. The potential cancer-stopper, "adenovirus serotype 5," is a common virus. One of the scienstists working on it describes it as "an assassin who kills all the bad guys." Is Science finally somewhere close to putting a stop to cancer?
Speaking to Telegraph's Alexander Masters, Professor Magnus Essand of the Uppsala University, carefully clarified that nothing has been "invented" just yet.
"Our results are only in the lab so far, not in humans, and many treatments that work in the lab can turn out to be not so effective in humans," the professor said.
Now, what is adenovirus serotype 5? Here are the Top 5 things you need to know:
5. Adenovirus serotype 5 is common virus that is not very costly to produce (once all the tests have been done).
4. This common virus is theorized to affect humans with only mild, flu-like conditions.
3. Prof Essand said adenovirus serotype 5 has killed tumour cell lines in animals, whereas the tumours were resistant to any other drug.
2. The potential cancer solution has been kept in a mini freezer since 2010 over lack of funds for further studies. Prof Essand told Masters his team would need "about a million pounds" to carry on with further studies.
1. Medical professionals have known since the 1880s that viral infections can result in significant reductions in tumours. Today, scientists are still in the process of understanding genetics and the body's behavior. Doctors are eager to find out more about the body's ability to heal itself with the aid of another form of sickness, albeit less serious.
Prof Essand has previously developed a virus against prostate cancer. This specific virus is about to enter human trials in Rotterdam with support from the European Union, Masters reported.
While the scientists are stuck in theories, cancer continues to claim lives all around the world. How promising is this virus against all forms of cancer? How long would it take to raise a million pounds?
To find out how to donate, go to www.uu.se/en/support/oncolytic. A donation of £1 million will entitle the benefactor the privilege of using his name to identify the cancer-fighting virus.
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