A DISCOVERY by Melbourne researchers about the body’s daily ability to kill off potentially cancerous cells could lead to earlier detection and treatment of lymphoma.
The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute research published today could be used develop a test that picks up a blood cancer before tumours form.
The study, published in the journal, Nature-Medicine, found that immune B cells undergo changes every single day that could lead to cancers if the body was not as effective at wiping them out.
WEHI’s Dr Axel Kallies said that everyone had spontaneous mutations in their immune B cells that could to B-cell lymphoma.
Between 2800 and 3500 Australians are diagnosed with the blood cancer each year. It forms when B cells mutate and multiply.
Researchers found that what stops most people from developing the cancer, despite daily changes in the immune cells, was effective surveillance by T cells, which detected the changes and eliminated them.
The research project was supported by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council, Australian Research Council, Cancer Council Victoria, Leukaemia Foundation of Australia and the Victorian Government.
Source: Walter & Eliza Hall Institute | Herald Sun