Stem cell technology could lead to a faster treatment for cancer patients and reduce reliance on chemotherapy, reveal researchers.
Dr Emma Smith, senior science information officer at Cancer Research UK, said that the new discovery would also be more effective at stopping the disease from returning back by reprogramming cancer-fighting cells, the Daily Express reported.
AdvertisementSmith said that the technology effectively uses the body's own immune system and harnesses its power to attack the cancer cells.
The researcher said that it specifically targets the tumour cells and leaves the healthy ones alone, which means that it comes without any of the side effects with treatments like chemotherapy, which can be harsh for patients.
It takes white blood cells and transforms them into stem cells before being reprogrammed to fight the patient's cancer.
According to study's lead researcher Dr Michel Sadelain, of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, the technique is very specific to the cancer cells themselves, which means fewer side effects.
Sadelain added that because they stay in the body, they are 'living drugs' and once present move around and stop recurrences.
The three-year research has been tested on mice.