TREATMENT FOR PANCREATIC CANCER WITH SURGERY AND VACCINE ENCOURAGING FOR OPERA GREAT MARILYN HORNE GETS PANCREATIC CANCER VACCINE AT JOHNS HOPKINS
A pancreatic cancer vaccine designed to enlist the immune system in the fight against pancreatic cancer has a celebrity recipient. Besides surgery for her cancer, Marilyn Horne, the renowned opera diva has received a pancreatic cancer vaccine at John Hopkins Medical Center. The results of the pancreas ca vaccine and surgery together are encouraging. By the way "smoking cigarettes is known to double the risk of pancreatic cancer, and cigarette smoking is believed to account for 20% to 25% of pancreatic cancers. The recent sequencing of the pancreatic cancer genome provided the team at Johns Hopkins a unique opportunity to discover the DNA changes (mutations) caused by cigarette smoking.Scientists at the Sol Goldman Pancreatic Cancer Research Center at Johns Hopkins report in the April 15th issue of Cancer Research (Cancer Research volume 69, pages 3681-3688, 2009) that up to 25% of the genetic mutations found in pancreatic cancers from cigarette smokers are caused by cigarette smoking."
This vaccine is designed for people who already have pancreatic cancer. Usually most vaccines are designed as prophylaxis but this one is to help the body attack the disease."Now declared free of pancreatic cancer two years after diagnosis, Marilyn Horne adds another milestone to her long list of accolades: "Prima donna and survivor." Horne,who has never discussed her experimental cancer treatment publicly said she wanted to talk about it to help others facing the same illness".
"Horne began receiving the injections of lab-grown pancreatic cancer cells in early 2007, after surgery to remove the tumor. The vaccine has been genetically modified with an immune-boosting gene to tackle any lingering malignant cells. "Essentially, the vaccine teaches the immune system to recognize those pancreas cancer cells as being foreign and attack them specifically," says Dr. Daniel Laheru, a Johns Hopkins oncologist leading the study. "Her most important treatment was the surgery, but we hope the vaccine is additional insurance against recurrence."