Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States after heart disease, accounting for an estimated 602,350 deaths in 2020 and 608,570 deaths in 2021. Although we still don’t know exactly what causes normal cells to become cancerous, scientists have narrowed down several risk factors and developed various treatments to prolong the lives of cancer patients. These treatments include surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy or immunotherapy; these treatments are usually meant to rid the patient’s body of cancer cells.
We know that the cancer develops when something goes wrong during the cell division process where damaged cells and old cells are destroyed and replaced by new cells, causing cells to grow out of control and form a tumor. Traditional cancer therapies such as chemotherapy are designed to reduce the size of the tumor by steadily killing off the cancer cells within it. However, researchers are now working on a type of stem cell treatment known as differentiation therapy that could treat cancers by turning the cancerous cells back into normal cells rather than killing them.
Stem cells are a type of unspecialized cell that can transform into any type of cell needed by the body; think of them as a kind of blank canvas that your body can use to make up different cell types. Embryonic stem cells are the first cells that form once a sperm fertilizes an ovum, and they eventually develop into all the other types of cells in your body. Stem cells from adults tend to be more mature than their embryonic counterparts, and they can only replace cells in one kind of organ.
Unlike regular cells that have a limited lifetime, stem cells have a considerably longer lifespan and thus a higher chance of amassing genetic mutations.
Evidence shows that stem cell-like cells in tumors may be at least partly responsible for the initiation, metastasis, progression, recurrence and treatment resistance of cancerous tumors. Consequently, researchers are hoping to develop a safe and effective treatment for cancer by reprogramming these adult stem cells to act more like embryonic stem cells and differentiate into noncancerous cells.
Differentiation therapy gives cancerous stem cells the ability to transform into mature cells, thereby stopping their out-of-control growth and turning them into normal cells. The therapy has already proven to be effective at treating an aggressive type of blood cancer known as acute promyelocytic leukemia.
It can also be safer than traditional cancer treatments because it doesn’t bombard cancer cells and the surrounding healthy cells with harmful chemicals and radiation.
Numerous efforts are being directed by enterprises such as QSAM Biosciences Inc. (OTCQB: QSAM) toward revolutionizing the way different cancers are treated. With stem cell therapy also showing promise, cancer care in the future is likely to be more effective than it currently is.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to QSAM Biosciences Inc. (OTCQB: QSAM) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/QSAM
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