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A breakthrough study by local doctors may hold new clues to one day curing certain cancers such as lung cancer.




Updated: Wed, Aug 26 2015, 12:54 AM CINCINNATI (Liz Bonis) -- A breakthrough study by local doctors may hold new clues to one day curing certain cancers such as lung cancer.   A new drug recently approved for use by the FDA showed promise for patients in a whole new way. By the time Jean Pierre Heiremans, or JP as he's known, saw Dr. David Waterhouse, traditional treatment for his stage four lung cancer no longer appeared to be stopping its spread. So Dr. Waterhouse gave him the option of enrolling in a clinical trial. It was comparing a newer therapy, called Nivolumab, to another traditional treatment medication. JP didn't know if he'd be given the newer therapy but he knows if he did get it, “This to me was something that didn't have odds to it yet because it was new, there were no odds. So I could make my own odds.” JP got lucky, He not only got the newer therapy and did make his own odds, he's still making them. The study results were published in the New England Journal of Medicine and showed JP wasn't the only one! As Dr. Waterhouse showed, when they started comparing the two study groups officials saw near doubling of survival. The trial drug appeared to work by sort of altering switches on cells to help the body fight back against the cancer. And not only did it appear to double the odds of survival in some, compared to the traditional treatment for others Dr. Waterhouse discovered, “Not only were they surviving, they were living.” Some in the study, such as JP, responded so well they just kept living and thriving. They were what Dr. Waterhouse called extraordinary or super responders. “When we did this study what we saw was a large number of those extraordinary responders, that unexpected home run. And we are not sure what's going to happen in them,” said Dr. Waterhouse What was most exciting, he said, about the trial wasn’t just the amazing results; it was that it was actually changing the way people think about living with cancer. The super performers, or super responders, really let officials know that there were long term outcomes they had never had before, changing the face of cancer survivorship. “What really made the trial so important was it showed a promise down the road that there was going to be a day that doctors could cure solid tumors. JP is now more than three years out of his treatment. He's exceeded his own odds of certain milestones such as seeing his daughter get married. He said he felt he was paving the way now for others to exceed the odds too and live with cancer as they would any other chronic health problem.

Read More at: http://www.local12.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/MONDAY-AT-6-Alive-and-thriving-188709.shtml

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