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May 10, 2005

Can Radio Waves Treat Cancer? Check Out The Cancer Zapper

Topics: Medicine

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center is about to begin tests to find out whether heat from radio waves can be used to kill cancer cells without harming other cells and without negative side effects. John Kanzius, 61, a former partner at Jet Broadcasting Company Inc. in Erie, developed the idea and is seeking patents for his prototype device.

Interesting, but does it work? Don't get too excited about this since there is still a lot of testing that has to be done and the experiment is in its early phases.  UPMC has only recently received university approval for animal testing - a phase that could take one to two years.

As to the matter of killing tumor cells without harming normal cells, that part isn't so far off since there are already two types of drugs being studied for their effect on cells undergoing radiation, and there are even natural products that make tumor cells more labile to radiation therapy treatment(for example) while decreasing the sensitivity of normal cells to radiation. These types of drugs are called radiosensitizers and Radioprotectors. Making tumor cells more sensitive to heat without affecting normal cells isn't all that far fetched.

Maybe a new drug developed for the Cancer Zapper might be called a thermosensitizer or a thermoprotector. I know, too much imagination, so little knowledge - so much to do, so little time. We'll just have to wait and see what they end up doing to make it work, and let's hope that it does. I've actually already spent a great deal of time in the product development of radioprotectors, and have conducted several pre-clinical studies that showed statistically significant results(p=.01). So I think the guy actually has a fair shot at making living to see it work.

Posted by Hyscience at May 10, 2005 9:58 PM

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