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|Kanzius device kills cancer without nanoparticles|
|Posted on Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 2:01 AM|
Researchers have discovered the Kanzius external radio-frequency device doesn't need nanoparticles -- microscopic pieces of metal injected into cells -- to effectively kill cancer.
Radio waves by themselves can make chemotherapy drugs more effective at treating some types of cancer, said Steven Curley, M.D., lead researcher for the late John Kanzius' device at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.
"We were surprised to find that radio waves without nanoparticles or chemotherapy kill between 10 percent and 30 percent of pancreatic and primary liver cancer cells," Curley said. "Combine it with common chemo drugs, you not only kill the cancer cells, the cancer doesn't grow as resistant to the chemotherapy as it typically does."
Curley spoke Saturday morning at faces2012, the inaugural Kanzius Cancer Research Foundation National Conference. The two-day conference, which started Friday, was held at the Ambassador Center, 7794 Peach St. in Summit Township.
The conference served two purposes: To update people on the latest research on the Kanzius device, and to rally and support the foundation's fundraisers.
More than 380 people attended the conference.
"I couldn't be any more pleased with how things have gone," said Mark Neidig Sr., executive director of the Kanzius Foundation. "People have been enthusiastic and there has been a lot of energy here."
Curley was one of three researchers who spoke at the conference. Hong Koo Kim of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and Dustin Kruse of the University of California -- Davis, updated participants on their research during an afternoon session.
The most common question people ask Curley is when will the Kanzius device be ready for human trials. It's a question for which the researcher doesn't have an answer.
"The Food & Drug Administration must approve human trials, and we have not formally approached the FDA yet," Curley said. "That's not up to me. It's up to Therm Med, the company which owns the intellectual property. I have been pushing Marianne (Kanzius, Therm Med's president and John Kanzius' widow) to go to the FDA and get things started."
Therm Med officials could not be immediately reached for comment Saturday afternoon.
Regardless of when human trials begin, they will likely focus on these new types of treatment that don't require nanoparticles, Curley said.
"You have the machine and you have the nanoparticles, so you would have to go through a combined morbidity process for the FDA," Curley said. "On the other hand, it would likely be a lot easier to get just the device approved because the nanoparticles are considered a drug and that process is more difficult."
Research with nanoparticles continues at M.D. Anderson, Curley said. Radio-wave research by itself is being done on pigs with the larger Kanzius device recently developed at Industrial Sales and Manufacturing in Erie and shipped to M.D. Anderson.
The conference also included four workshops that focused on different aspects of fundraising: grass-roots efforts, social networking, government funding and getting the media involved.
People from 13 different states and Canada attended the conference. One participant was Robbie Kreitz, a special-education teacher from Dublin, Calif., who has a student with recurring lymphoma.
"I learned about Kanzius during a trip to Washington, D.C.," Kreitz said during the lunchtime program. "I saw a map for Coins for Kanzius and there was nothing for our state. I thought my school could spearhead all of California."
Neidig said Kanzius Foundation officials will meet soon to discuss whether to have another national conference in 2013.
Bad weather forced the conference to cancel its last session. Juggler, comedian and cancer survivor Scott Burton's flight was delayed in Detroit.
Published on October 28, 2012 at http://www.goerie.com/article/20121028/NEWS02/310279886/Kanzius-device-kills-cancer-without-nanoparticles