Science in the future is unlikely to find a way to completely defeat cancer, but scientists will most likely be able to translate it into the category of chronic diseases with which you can live for decades. This opinion was expressed in an interview with the Danish scientific Internet portal videnskab.dk by the participants of the conference of the European Society of Medical Oncology in Copenhagen. This year it was visited by 20 thousand researchers from 130 countries of the world.
“I think that the dream that after millions of years of existence of the disease it will be possible to eradicate it is just an illusion. I don’t think we will be able to defeat cancer, but I believe that we will be able to make it a chronic and not a fatal disease,”said Jorgen Olsen, head of the research department of the Danish Cancer Society.
Danish biologist Mads Daugor, who works in Canada, agrees with his opinion, who last year published a sensational scientific work on a promising technique that in the future may allow treating many types of cancer by delivering drugs to the affected cells using a protein that the malaria parasite uses in nature.
“We will not find a remedy that can completely heal a cancer patient, but over time, our arsenal of methods will expand so much that throughout the patient's life we can attack the disease from different sides. We will be able to build a world in which cancer will not die,”the famous scientist believes.
One of the main topics of the conference is the use of immunotherapeutic drugs for cancer treatment. Medicines, which for the most part are still very expensive, in many cases can significantly prolong the life of patients who cannot be helped by other types of therapy.
“Science does not stand still. Even 40 years ago, only 35% of cancer patients survived 5 years after they were diagnosed. Now this figure has grown to 65%. This is evidence that we are moving in the right direction, faster and faster, says Olsen. - As new methods, technologies, discoveries appear, our chances of achieving a breakthrough grow. I am much more optimistic about the prospect of making cancer a chronic disease than I was 10 years ago.”
According to scientists, the main difficulty in the fight against cancer is its ability to mutate and adapt to changing conditions, as well as spread throughout the body, passing into new forms.
“Perhaps someday we will find that common quality of all types of cancer that can be used in treatment. However, from my point of view, even the most promising broad spectrum therapy cannot solve the problem alone. I am sure that the best solution is to simultaneously beat on illness with different means from different sides, "Daugor believes.