Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in the United States today. When one receives a cancer diagnosis pain and expense can become nearly as devastating as the disease. Mikhail Blagosklonny is a cancer researcher whose hope is to find ways to treat cancer effectively while also ensuring that costs remain law.
Cancer treatments can be so costly that they are considered a luxury rather than necessary care. As a researcher and professor at the Oncology at Rosewell Park Cancer Institute, Mikhail Blagosklonny hopes to find ways that patients have access to good healthcare regardless of their financial status. The risk of developing a cancer increases as an individual ages and this particular link is an area of interest for Blagosklonny.
In addition to making care more affordable, Blagosklonny hopes to increase human longevity. Current cancer treatments are hard on the human body and can even inhibit an individual’s ability to recover once he or she is in remission. Aging people already have more difficulty when recovering from minor ailments than their younger counterparts. Recovery from radiation and surgery can significantly impact an elderly person’s quality of life. It is Blagosklonny’s hope that scientists can find ways to remove cancerous cells while protecting normal cells so that an individual’s ability to recover is enhanced.
One particular drug that Blagosklonny advocates using in cancer treatment is Rapamycin. The drug is also known as Sirolimus and has been historically used as an anti-fungal medicine. Through research and use it was discovered that the drug has antiproliferative and immunosuppressive effects thus making it useful for a variety of treatments. For cancer treatment in particular, Rapamycin promotes tumor regression and enhances the body’s immune response to cancerous cells. Therefore it can be an excellent supplement to other cancer eliminating therapies.
While Rapamycin is clearly an excellent drug for the treatment of cancer it also can be used to treat benign tumor growth. Tuberous Sclerosis Complex is a condition that causes benign tumors throughout the body. Studies have shown that Rapamycin suppresses the growth of these tumors. Because of its immunosuppressive properties Rapamycin has been used to prevent organ rejection in people who have had transplants. As a result, Rapamycin is an excellent drug for treating cancers and benign tumors in people who have received organ transplants.
In addition to its effectiveness in treating cancer, Rapamycin may be able to increase longevity in humans. This is a particular area of interest for Blagosklonny and in his research he has shown that when used in mice, Rapamycin can help fight tuberculosis. There is additional potential that the drug may be able to treat Alzheimer’s, Muscular Dystrophy, and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Mikhail Blagosklonny has contributed a great deal to the scientific community with his research on cancer and longevity. His work has attracted the attention of the medical and non-medical communities alike and will be an important step forward in the fight against cancer.