Researchers may be close to discovering melanoma vaccine - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

9/28/09

Researchers may be close to discovering melanoma vaccine

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By Kristin Beerman | email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas are working to put an end to one of the most dangerous forms of skin cancer - melanoma.  They're studying a protein they hope will interact with the body's immune system to kill the deadly melanoma cells.

Dr.  James Huth is heading up the Southwestern melanoma study and hoping this will produce a vaccine for melanoma patients.  So far, it has worked for 59 year old Cathy Bjorklund, who was diagnosed with stage 3 melanoma in her foot. "We would hope that it would cure a significant amount of patients and prevent their melanoma from coming back," said James F. Huth, M.D., who is an oncologist at UT Southwestern.  Melanoma is unique because we have experience that it reacts with the immune system. We've seen melanomas go away in people."

Cathy is a few toes short, but cancer free and hammering home the message of sunscreen!  The UT Southwestern study is still looking for patients whose melanoma has spread to the lymph nodes. 

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