As a young scientist in the 1990s, Dr. Evan Snyder, now director of Sanford-Burnham’s Stem Cells and Regenerative Biology Program, had never worked on cancer. But when his close friend Dr. James Galambos died from a glioblastoma, he promised the family he would do everything he could to find a cure. In 2000, Dr. Snyder, Dr. Karen Aboody, now at City of Hope, and colleagues published a paper that described how stem cells could be used to treat cancer. A recent article on the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine(CIRM) website highlighted this breakthrough:
Neural stem cells, it revealed, are attracted to tumors like moths to a light. If they could be made to carry a chemotherapeutic payload, they could serve as weapons against the wanton spread of metastatic brain cancer.
CIRM committed $37 million to successfully move this promising research into clinical trials. To learn more about how stem cells can be used to target tumors, read Manipulated Medicine.
The City of Hope trial has also been featured on CBS News.