Could a Newly Developed Plant Virus-Based System Treat Lymphoma?
Given the high prevalence of NHL and the unpleasant (and sometimes very harmful) side effects of standard treatment, it’s extremely important that better treatment options be developed. Thankfully, doctors and scientists are hard at work doing just that. Since the early 1990s, the prognosis for NHL has drastically improved thanks to advances in medicine. A variety of new treatments are in development, as well as research advances that could play a role in the early detection of NHL, which would ultimately improve treatment outcomes.
Due to the increase in the prevalence of NHL, along with the unpleasant side effects of standard treatments, it has become a high priority to discover better treatment options for the disease. Doctors and scientists are doing just that. One such research topic is the genetic component of those cancerous cells. It is important to study specifically the DNA present inside the lymphocytes to better understand the progression from the normal lymphocytes to the cancerous lymphoma. Stem cell transplantation is another treatment option to be integrated along with the treatment of cancer as a complement to chemotherapy. These stem cell transplantations are said to allow the individual to receive high doses of chemo in the hopes of killing those cancer-causing cells on a large scale, and very quickly. But the problem is there can be issues finding a suitable donor to carry out the transplants.
One of the most exciting forms of treatment is the development of a new form of drug administration to be done with a plant-based virus. In a recently published study, scientists examined a method for using this plant-based virus system with the chemotherapy drug. Researchers are at present extensively developing nano-carriers to deliver the chemotherapy while inducing fewer side effects. These drugs would not only reduce the negative side effects of the chemo, but would also help to improve the accuracy of its delivery. With this evidence, it is thought that this form of treatment would be helpful in potentially killing off only the cancer-causing cells instead of the healthy ones as well or all the cells entirely. But, due to the spherical shape of most of the nano-carriers, the functions are known to be limited. The question arises as to why a viral form of delivery. Viruses, as we all know, enter and spread throughout the body in the same manner when they make a person sick. But in this case, instead of causing symptoms of illness, the virus would start to carry out smaller molecules, which would contain medications for those cancerous cells. These plant-based viruses would be elongated in shape and far superior than the spherical ones.
Even though the TMV drug-based delivery is currently in the initial phases of research, there is no doubt that once it is confirmed and properly designed, it will lead to a major breakthrough for the next generation of treatment of NHL. As there is still ample amounts of research being done, time will tell as to which inventive way is the best of the new discoveries in the field of cancer treatment. Based on the exciting detection techniques and treatment methods, there is already improvement in the works as we await the new development of this kind of cancer treatment.