Lung fluid could be used for cancer vaccines – study in Israel

Lung fluid could be used for cancer vaccines – study in Israel

According to a new Israeli study, the fluid circulating in the lungs could be used to develop new methods of diagnosing and possibly treating cancer.

The researchers found that specific peptides present in lung fluid can “provide an important source of biomarkers for tumor diagnosis. »

HLA peptides are proteins involved in the immune response to infections. Scientists from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and Sheba Hospital Center discovered that they were present in lung fluid and came up with a methodology to purify and analyze the fluid to detect them.

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They studied several liters of lung fluid and discovered that the HLA peptides it contains “store” enough information to detect certain types of lung cancer. They published their results in the Journal for Immunotherapy in Cancer (JITC).

“We can detect the peptides and, in theory, they could be used as a new way to detect cancer, as well as to create a cancer vaccine for specific patients,” said Dr Michael Peled of Sheba, one of the researchers, at Israel time.

“It is important to emphasize that we are still at the research stage and that there is no clinical trial at the moment”.

The study he conducted with Technion Professor Arie Admon and his PhD student Sofia Khazan-Kost concluded that lung fluid could prove a rich source of cancer-fighting antigens, as well as diagnostic information. .

Illustrative image: A doctor detects lung cancer on a CT scan. (Credit: utah778 via iStock by Getty Images)

HLA molecules carry many antigens that come from cancer cells and their environment. They have the ability to fight cancer if they stay put, but instead they are transported to the lung fluid, Peled said.

His team suggests recovering them in liquid for therapeutic use in the patient from whom they were taken.

“These antigens could be used to stimulate the immune system to attack the tumor,” Admon explained. He said they could form the basis of a “therapeutic vaccine”, that is to say a new immunotherapy intended to slow the impact of cancer.

The researchers hope that drug developers will use their research as the basis for such a treatment.

“This has the potential to activate the body’s own immune system against the tumor,” Admon pointed out.

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