The phenomenon of cancer resistance is one of the causes of cancer treatment difficult, even causing cancer recurrence in some people.
For a long time, the phenomenon of cancer-resistant cells is one of the problems in the treatment process, especially for chemotherapy. Specifically, in a chemotherapy , a drug called cisplatin is used, which is used to treat all common cancers such as bladder cancer, head, neck, lungs, uterus, testes, etc. This medicine prevents blocking the mechanism of self-repair of DNA, causing DNA damage and consequently leading to the death of cancer cells.
However, cancer cells are often resistant to this drug.
Graham Walker, a professor of the American College of Biological Cancer Research at Massachusetts (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), is one of the people behind the study. In his previous work, he studied the DNA repair process by synthesizing (translesion synthesis) TLS . This is believed to be the major cause of cancer cells to avoid damage from chemotherapy, leading to ineffective treatment.
Scientists explain that, normally, healthy cells can repair DNA by removing precisely damaged DNA. But when these cells become cancerous, they cannot rely on this normal repair. Instead, they use TLS. This is the process of using special enzymes capable of reproducing poorly accurate simulations of DNA. These poorly accurate simulations then lead to mutations, causing cancer cells to resist treatments that destroy DNA, such as chemotherapy.
On the other hand, scientists have always argued that chemotherapy for chemotherapy needs to be upgraded urgently, not only because it is often ineffective and often resisted by cancer cells, but also many side effects affecting human health such as kidney failure, loss of hearing, hemorrhoids, allergies, impaired immune function .
In the process of upgrading research, scientists had to do a lot of experiments, including testing more than 10,000 different drugs, and finding out which one single drug was able to help. cisplatin effectively destroys cancer cells. Scientists have finally found a remedy to block TLS, making cancer cells more susceptible to destruction. They experimented by combining this drug with cisplatin in many human cancer cells and found that the effect of destroying cancer cells was more than just using each chemotherapy alone.
Currently, scientists have begun testing combinations on laboratory mouse models with human cancer cells, and found that tumors have greatly dissolved. Professor Graham Walker said: "This substance increases the effectiveness of cancer cell destruction when used together with cisplatin and prevents mutation".
In the future, scientists are actively studying more to better understand the structure behind this combination. They aim to perfect it so that they can start testing on humans. This can be considered as one of the advances in cancer treatment.