Medical practitioners and researchers are still looking for a general cure that could be made for cancer. However, there might not be much hope for that. A general vaccine for cancer is not likely to happen soon.
One of the main reasons that a general cure for cancer might not be likely is that cancer has a number of genetic varieties. That would already make a general cancer medication unlikely. A medicine that might work for one type of cancer might necessarily work for another.
Dr. Ryan Hartmaier is the lead author of the study and is from Foundation Medicine, USA. He has said that a broad general vaccine for cancer has been the ongoing search by many researchers and medical scientists for years now. In their search for a general treatment for cancer, they have looked at over 60,000 cancer tumors and their genetic variations.
In that search, many researchers have realized that a general cancer vaccine would not be successful. Even in the best scenario that they have come up with, only around 0.3 of the population who has cancer would be able to benefit from a general vaccine. A general cancer vaccine would have to target neo-antigens produced by cancer cells. However, it has been noted that not all cancer cells would produce them, according to Genome Medicine.
The genes produced by cancer also vary considerably from one type to another. Making a general cancer vaccine would then be difficult because of the variations in genes among cancer types. There could also be unknown genetic variations that might not be targeted by a general cancer vaccine, as Science Daily reports.
Researchers are still not giving up on the search for a general cancer cure. The research made has only looked at one possible pathway. Other possible neo-antigen routes might be there for researchers to explore. For now though, a general vaccine for cancer is not likely. A study finds that middle age heart risk could become dementia risk later.