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Solomon
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[*] posted on 10-9-2013 at 19:22
Cancer Cure


I recently developed an idea for using genticly modified flesh eating bacteria to only eat cancerous cells which would be identified via some kind of tag (like the recently developed radioactive nanoparticles)
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Solomon
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[*] posted on 10-9-2013 at 19:25


Is this feasable?
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Variscite
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[*] posted on 10-9-2013 at 19:41


Im not too well versed in these things, but explain further how the bacteria would identify the cancerous cells.



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[*] posted on 10-9-2013 at 20:03


Can we have some sort of research or paper about said "Radioactive nanoparticles" and their function here?
I assume these are used to 'tag' the cancer, but how?




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Solomon
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[*] posted on 10-9-2013 at 20:20


For more information on radioactive nanoparticles visit:
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130521132229.ht...
In regard to how the bacteria would identify the cancer cells, it could be geneticly engineered to release a chemical that made it attack cells when in the prescence of radiation.

[Edited on 9-11-2013 by Solomon]
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[*] posted on 11-9-2013 at 04:44


This is so far from humankind's current abilities that nobody will be able to answer your question ('is this possible?').

There are several major problems that need to be solved first:

- 'some kind of tag' to mark cancer cells has been the target of intense research for the past 50 years or more, without much success. This remains a huge problem to this date, mainly because all cancers are different, even in one person or even the cells within one tumor. A few minor successes have been reported, but a silver bullet remains to be found.

- We cannot at present modify bacteria to program such complex behaviour from scratch. At best, we can alter existing behaviour, but even that is difficult and fails more often than not.

An interesting idea, which perhaps could be done in the distant future, but it may not be the most effective means to cure cancers (if you can tag the cells perfectly, then with existing drugs there are already very effective means to kill those cells specifically. The problem is not the killing, the problem is the tagging).

Even if you could make it work, a problem with bacteria is that they cannot reach many locations in the body.




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Antiswat
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[*] posted on 11-9-2013 at 08:14


if this is a potential cure for cancer, you might want to watch your back, or well perhaps that might not be needed..
the cancer 'industry' has as much as 160 BILLION dollars running around anually, and i think thats just in the US!!
there are several plants already known, apart from weed that have a good effect on cancer cells, but this information is withheld and possibly (very likely) people trying to grow this are silenced, aswell as the ones trying to inform people about it..
without this being too much ''conspiracy'', if you really did find a potent cancer cure, i wouldnt go loudly with it

please be beyond careful with who you talk about cancer cure with..




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Solomon
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[*] posted on 12-9-2013 at 23:21


I could understand your fear of giving such information online, but could you identify this super weed for me.
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Antiswat
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[*] posted on 13-9-2013 at 03:36


no no no ... not as in patents and money.. as in governmental secrets that will need to be silenced before it downs the massive cancer-industry



~25 drops = 1mL @dH2O viscocity - STP
Truth is ever growing - but without context theres barely any such.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solubility_table
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[*] posted on 13-9-2013 at 05:19


Even if we could beat cancer we would be far from immortal. Eventually our body would get beaten up by the environment. Just imagine horrible death caused by arthritic joints and damaged insides. Isn't cardiovascular disease thought to be caused by fre radicals acting on blood and blood vessels anyway?
Body as in biological creation is far from perfect.

In order to live forever you would have to beat some laws of nature. In the end we all are here doing natural selection, those with most desirable genetics often find partner and have kids. This is actually over time improving overall genetics of a population. It's still very primal and our problem is that we have human mind. One of most important things is to grow and reproduce looking from the view of nature. Why nobody knows. So now if we become immortal, what are you going to do? Given that most of the things in life are pursued for personal satisfaction such as sex or money. Which all ends up with us probably reproducing.


Nature doesn't want us to live forever, beating cancer won't make us immortal. But we still beat it sometimes and doing it halfway such as with chemotheraphy is a nice way to make money. Beating cancer completely on the other hand wouldn't be most profitable route. It wouldn't probably be good for long term when you think about human existence in the future.

Short term it would be pretty nice to prevent aging in general for yourself for example, not whole humanity. Sounds selfish, evil and unhumane though. But what choice would you have if you found a way to keep yourself like in your 20s forever?

[Edited on 13-9-2013 by Random]
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[*] posted on 13-9-2013 at 06:28


From an evolutionary standpoint, I am not sure it would matter much:
Whether you live for a 1000 years or your offspring does, either way your genes remain in the pool.

In the very long run, however, the process of sex and procreation makes sure our genes get mutated and mixed in new combinations which is absolutely critical to adjusting our organism to the slowly changing environment. This is universally found in all domains of life, underlining its importance for long-term survival.

It is not inconceivable that we will find a way to become immortal or nearly so in the sometime in the future. Aging research is hot on the agenda's these days and with todays powerful techniques, it is not impossible that we will come to understand and modify aging processes. Our life expectance is a result of evolution, and there is, as far as we can currently tell, no reason that would prevent us from extending it. Alternatively, stem cell work suggests it may be possible to replace (parts of) our bodies over and over again (perhaps 3D printed with veins, nerves, etc).




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[*] posted on 16-9-2013 at 04:30


a-little-bioengineering-e-coli-becomes-a-pathogen-fighting-superhero



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[*] posted on 16-9-2013 at 05:22


Quote:
I could understand your fear of giving such information online, but could you identify this super weed for me.

It's cannabis ─ since 1937, demonised to the point of absurdity, a beautiful, tropical herb, so valued by the ancients it has been adapted, over millennia, to flourish practically worldwide.
But ultimately, if accident or disease doesn't claim you you'll succumb to the 'toxicity' of the air you breathe . . .





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[*] posted on 16-9-2013 at 15:02


Quote: Originally posted by Pulverulescent  
Quote:
I could understand your fear of giving such information online, but could you identify this super weed for me.

It's cannabis ─ since 1937, demonised to the point of absurdity, a beautiful, tropical herb, so valued by the ancients it has been adapted, over millennia, to flourish practically worldwide.
But ultimately, if accident or disease doesn't claim you you'll succumb to the 'toxicity' of the air you breathe . . .



Refs please.

Quote: Originally posted by Antiswat  
if this is a potential cure for cancer, you might want to watch your back, or well perhaps that might not be needed..
the cancer 'industry' has as much as 160 BILLION dollars running around anually, and i think thats just in the US!!
there are several plants already known, apart from weed that have a good effect on cancer cells, but this information is withheld and possibly (very likely) people trying to grow this are silenced, aswell as the ones trying to inform people about it..
without this being too much ''conspiracy'', if you really did find a potent cancer cure, i wouldnt go loudly with it

please be beyond careful with who you talk about cancer cure with..


Refs please.

Conspiracy theories have no place on a scientific discussion board.



Back to the topic at hand:
Your idea is not new, it's been one of the many potential methods explored to effectively treat cancer. Bacteria is generally discounted in favor of viruses(yes, this is the correct pluralization) however. As was said previously, bacteria tend to be far too large to reach some parts of the body.
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/jan/04/2013-ne...
(Not the most reputable reference, but good enough to confirm my statements)
My brother's Ph.D thesis in molecular biology was in a field closely related to this.

Quote:

- We cannot at present modify bacteria to program such complex behaviour from scratch. At best, we can alter existing behaviour, but even that is difficult and fails more often than not.

Incorrect, protein tagging is a well explored area. It can be done at home for less than the price of a distillation kit, from isolation, to cloning, to transferring into a suitable host. 6-histidine tagging is the most common method used. I'm sure you have heard of the various experiments done on expressing luminescent proteins in monkeys(glow in the dark monkeys.)

The first artificial polymerase chain reaction(Cloning of DNA) was done by manually transferring the isolated segment of DNA between 3 waterbaths set at specific temperatures.
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[*] posted on 17-9-2013 at 02:44


How could you perform protein tagging at home?
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[*] posted on 17-9-2013 at 04:57


Quote: Originally posted by Mesa  
Quote: Originally posted by Pulverulescent  
Quote:

But ultimately, if accident or disease doesn't claim you you'll succumb to the 'toxicity' of the air you breathe . . .



Refs please.


I messed up the quoting, but here are two reviews:

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/09598049950...
http://www.nature.com/nrc/journal/v3/n4/abs/nrc1046.html

[Edited on 17-9-2013 by sonogashira]
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[*] posted on 19-9-2013 at 21:32


Quote: Originally posted by Random  
How could you perform protein tagging at home?

http://openpcr.org/

Pre-empting smartass replies regarding the price compared to a distillation kit; this is only one of the various models available to home lab's. I grabbed the first google result I happened to have my mouse over.


EDIT:

Quote: Originally posted by sonogashira  
Quote: Originally posted by Mesa  
Quote: Originally posted by Pulverulescent  

But ultimately, if accident or disease doesn't claim you you'll succumb to the 'toxicity' of the air you breathe . . .



Refs please.


I messed up the quoting, but here are two reviews:

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/09598049950...
http://www.nature.com/nrc/journal/v3/n4/abs/nrc1046.html

[Edited on 17-9-2013 by sonogashira]


You forgot to remove the uncited [ QUOTE] tag I inserted, I'm used to typing out PHPBB code manually, when you edited it to portray my request in a way that was extremely out of context, you only deleted the end quote( [ /QUOTE]) tag.



[Edited on 20-9-2013 by Mesa]

[Edited on 20-9-2013 by Mesa]
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Antiswat
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[*] posted on 20-9-2013 at 09:31


the problem with references in this context is, that its not really that easy to carry out well made experiments, as you might get terminated from the surface of the earth for trying to release factual research, and ... this is getting quite paradoxal, mesa..

i do recall seeing something pointing towards research has been done about a chinese plant thats capable of removing cancer very effectively, but even if i did read or find the article, it would probably be lost at this moment anyways

but just because the system opresses the facts, it doesnt mean theyre wrong, opinions does not de-factualize anything.. back in time the general understanding was that we were living on a massive cube




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Truth is ever growing - but without context theres barely any such.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solubility_table
http://www.trimen.pl/witek/calculators/stezenia.html
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phlogiston
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[*] posted on 20-9-2013 at 15:04


Quote: Originally posted by Mesa  

Quote: Originally posted by phlogiston  

- We cannot at present modify bacteria to program such complex behaviour from scratch. At best, we can alter existing behaviour, but even that is difficult and fails more often than not.

Incorrect, protein tagging is a well explored area.


Certainly, but protein tagging is completely irrelevant to the question as far as I can see.
The TS asked whether it was possible to modify bacteria such that they would migrate through the body, recognize cancer cells and then devour them, leaving healthy tissue alone.
I fail to see how you envision doing that with a protein tag.

Quote: Originally posted by Mesa  
tagging is the most common method used. I'm sure you have heard of the various experiments done on expressing luminescent proteins in monkeys(glow in the dark monkeys.)


And this has very little to do with protein tagging. They just expressed GFP (a fluorescent protein) in monkeys. The only novelty of that work was that they were the first to do it in monkeys which had been unsuccesfull until then. While not particularly exciting technically, it is still an important breakthrough because it opens the way to certain experiments that only be done with non-primates before.
Please do explain how this work is related to protein tagging or, more interestingly, the question posed by the TS.




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Solomon
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[*] posted on 23-9-2013 at 15:50


Does anyone know where I can get flesh eating bacteria (isolation from lakes, online, etc...) The primary variety that I am intrested in is Aeromonas Hydrophlia.

[Edited on 9-23-2013 by Solomon]

[Edited on 9-23-2013 by Solomon]
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[*] posted on 23-9-2013 at 18:26


I dont know...how is this bacteria genetically modified? And how does this bacteria identify the good cells or the cancer cells?



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[*] posted on 24-9-2013 at 02:00


You can probably scoop it out of any lake in a warm climate.
The real questions are: 1. how are you going to identify these bacteria among countless other microorganisms? 2. How are you planning to culture these things safely?




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[*] posted on 27-9-2013 at 02:44


It sounds like an interesting idea - as long as it doesn't end up targeting healthy cells as well.
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[*] posted on 27-9-2013 at 05:49


Bacterial replication rates and ability to exchange plasmid DNA as well as sex factors make their use very discouraged due to the severe risk of mutation. Given you're then having said bacteria seek out radioactive sources, I imagine that you'd see an increase in said mutations in part due to the errors in Uvr proteins. The other problem I see is that you trade off the lack of re-dosing due to replication with the problem of not being able to tailor a dose within a therapeutic index.

Too much bacteria will begin to target, at the very least, the normal tissue from which the cancer is derived. Much like a surgeon who must take some healthy tissue to ensure complete removal, chemotherapy errs on the side of caution and off-target effects to go after rapidly dividing tissue, which is the only broad spectrum indicator of cancer. This also effects GI tissue, hair, etc. Assuming perfect cancer targeting, what happens when the bacteria has no more cancer to target? It multiplied and then will most likely attack the next nearest binding affinity target, or target of the radioisotope ligand.

Also, wow at the thought that the "cancer industry" colludes to eschew the financial advantages to be had from the technology behind a cancer cure, and somehow has a cure hidden through government weapons satellites. I cannot imagine how most of my colleagues survive other than people just not appreciating their work. No one would be putting themselves into the dreaded perma-postdoc position prevalent in the biomedical sciences if there were a cure to propel them into emeritus status, Lasker awards, or even Nobel prizes. The couple laureates I know in passing also wouldn't mind taking a stab at tying with Linus Pauling.

I would hope that some of the conspiratorial of you would consider that every individual's DNA is unique, and that expression of our genes varies across different tissues. Consider the large number of histological terms for a tumor. Taken in combination with the fact that carcinogenesis can occur from an uncatalogued plethora of mutations due to the complexity of cell cycle checkpoints, differentiation, healing, and biological systems in general... and I would hope that it would become evident that "cancer" can require individualized treatments for best effect. We see this with pharmacogenomics, so why would it be any different in oncology? This becomes particularly evident in the small scale with the evolution of hormone independent cancers at advanced, invasive stage cancers.



[Edited on 27-9-2013 by Chemosynthesis]
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[*] posted on 28-9-2013 at 10:29


Regarding the effectiveness of cannabinoids in treating certain types of cancer:

1) "Cancer Res, March 15, 2008 68; 1945"
2) "FEBS Letters, Volume 436, Issue 1, 25 September 1998, Pages 6–10"
3) " J Clin Invest. 2003;111(1):43–50:
4) " Cancer Res July 1, 2006 66; 6748"

And so forth. Just posted those because someone wanted a reference. Cannabinoids appear to target dysfunctional cells whilst leaving normal tissue untouched.

The problem with treating cancer is that cancer is not something that is brought on by some universal mutation. Some cancers are highly correlated with Ras/Raf kinase abnormalities, some are associated with overactive anti-apoptotic factors... Ideally, every cancer patient should be treated individually, hence the intense desire by the medical community to develop personalized oncological treatment.

One possibility would be the development of sets of affibody proteins that can be attached to bacteria or nanoparticles. These proteins bind selectively to cells with the faulty proteins of interest, minimizing collateral damage... The problem is how are you going to get the recognition moiety to work in tandem with a cytotoxic element?
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