In today's WSJ, on page A17, there is an article titled "The New Ways We Fight Cancer" by Samuel Waxman and Richard Gambino, oncologist and philosopher, respectively. Here's a summary of the good news for us:
* Over 5,000 fewer patients are dying every year from cancer! - a 1.1% yearly decline.
* Vaccines, such as the one for cervical cancer (although one wonders why mothers are not managing their nine-year-olds enough to not warrant this particular vaccine), are being developed and used for prevention of several cancers; also, research is progressing on one for hepatitis C.
* Epigenetics, a.k.a. using special proteins to change the mutated, cancer-causing genes back to their normal selves.
* Targeted therapies, a.k.a. "personalized molecular profiles" - because all cases of breast cancer are not caused by the exact same protein.
* Targeting suspected "cancer stem cells" - stem cells more likely to mutate and wreak havoc.