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Scottish patients own cells to be used in cancer treatment trial

A PIONEERING new treatment for cancer which uses patients own cells to attack the disease is being trialled in Scotland. Authorisation has been granted for the research which will see patients suffering from three different kinds of cancer undergo the therapy.

The treatment involves a type of white blood cell which naturally battles cancer, but which struggles to fight the disease when it starts taking hold. The cells are known as gamma delta T-cells. TC BioPharm chief executive Dr Michael Leek, whose Scottish company which has brought the treatment to the UK, said: “These cells are amazing because they have the ability to detect cells that have been transformed by cancer and then attack them and kill them.”

In Japan, he said, they have been extracting gamma delta T-cells from patients, growing them in “massive numbers” in strict laboratory conditions, activating them so they are particularly aggressive and then injecting them back into the cancer sufferers.

Read on: Scottish patients own cells to be used in cancer treatment