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Cancer Cure?


Deborah

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On FB this article appeared about a cure for cancer: Cancer Cure

The point of the article is that this simple cure is being ignored because it would mean all the expensive drugs now in use would be worthless and the millions going into cancer research would be lost.

My point in bringing this up is not to discuss conspiracy theories or even the efficacy of this particular drug, but rather bring it down to the individual level. If a person of integrity works for a big company that makes millions of dollars and realizes that he is contributing to a fraud because they refuse to acknowledge such a discovery what does he do? He risks losing his job, earning the wrath of a powerful organization and in the end maybe not having much of an influence at all. But should he still do the right thing? What would you do?

We hear about whistleblowers, and from what I've seen their lives are turned upside down. Is it worth it to make such waves for the sake of doing what is right and ruining your life and your family's?

In the movie Schindler's List, the man Schindler was able to save thousands of lives with his hiring of Jews to work in the factories. But in the end of his life he died in poverty. Yet could he have stood by and done anything less than what he did?

This question was also posed in a movie from the nineties with William Macy called "The Water Engine." A man had invented an engine that could be run on water. The big oil companies of course tried to suppress his invention. I don't remember all the details of the movie but as I recall in the end the engine and it's secret lay on a shelf in a pawn shop.

Most of us will never be involved in such life altering situations but we still have daily choices to make and I think it is a good idea to re-examine every once in awhile why we make some of the choices we do.

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I know a man who helped dupont develope a 500K mile tire.

As for integrity and knowing something about a business. In such a business most likely there is a confidentiality contract, so which is greater your word not tell or telling loosing everything, but your actions contribute to the outing of a particular cure.

Is Danell Elsberg a "hero" of sorts? I sure think so, but it seems to me, most of America couldn't be bothered with the truth. I believe just a month or two ago I mentioned about knowing a Special Ops member in Afghanistan who was upset that he was being used to protect corparate interest (his group was order with taking a particular hill after they secured the hill a US or non-afgan mining company came in and started mining, the Special Forces had to stay and play security guard.) I also posted about the Highest Ranking Medal of Honor Receipant who later in life gave a speech about how he came to realize he service as a marine (spanish american war to WWI) he was just a thug for corparate interest. This mans service and integrity where question because he seemingly belittled the American Military.

So I really believe that much of America can't be bothered with the truth. Just look at how Wikileaks is perceived by the general public. As K said on Men in Black "Individuals are smart people are stupid" I don't think any who is not dieing of Cancer cares that coparations are hiding secrets that could cure diseases. I think much of America would say a whistleblower should be ashamed of breeching a confidentiality agreement.

The US Tax payer bailed out Foreign banks, and paid the bonuses of horse rearends who caused a global market failure....did America care about this bailout....NOPE, not a bit. The general public just does not care.

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On FB this article appeared about a cure for cancer: Cancer Cure

The point of the article is that this simple cure is being ignored because it would mean all the expensive drugs now in use would be worthless and the millions going into cancer research would be lost.

My point in bringing this up is not to discuss conspiracy theories or even the efficacy of this particular drug, but rather bring it down to the individual level. If a person of integrity works for a big company that makes millions of dollars and realizes that he is contributing to a fraud because they refuse to acknowledge such a discovery what does he do? He risks losing his job, earning the wrath of a powerful organization and in the end maybe not having much of an influence at all. But should he still do the right thing? What would you do?

Bringing it down to the individual level would undercut belief in this conspiracy. After all, drug manufactures and their families are not immune to getting cancer, themselves.

It is one thing to accuse oil company executives of buying up and hiding the design of some (mythical) invention, simply to preserve their oil profits. It is quite another to accuse drug company executives of being willing to give their lives (or stand by and let one of their children die), just to protect their bottom line.

To directly answer your question, a person of integrity who realizes he is contributing to a fraud should come forward, even at the risk of losing his job. Even if the “powers that be” do not retaliate against him, a person of integrity should be willing to quit his job, rather than continue to contribute to a fraud.

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This question was also posed in a movie from the nineties with William Macy called "The Water Engine." A man had invented an engine that could be run on water. The big oil companies of course tried to suppress his invention. I don't remember all the details of the movie but as I recall in the end the engine and it's secret lay on a shelf in a pawn shop.

As well it should, since such an engine could not possibly work

Just once, I would like to see a movie about a greedy oil executive who goes into partnership with the inventor to jointly patent and manufacture this sort of engine. Then he makes the obvious speculation in oil company stocks before announcing the invention to the world. Then, using the money from his stock market killing, he buys a controlling interest in a major auto company, eventually, taking control of the entire auto industry (and probably enriching a lot of lawyers and judges along the way).

BTW, one of my physics profs. told a story of a car with such a “water engine.” It seems that a fellow Caltech student owned an old car that had been converted over (during WW II) to run on butane. The gas tank was disconnected but never removed. These guys and a few others would pull into a gas station, and after a theatrical exhibition of furtiveness, put water into their gas tank. Then, after more exaggerated theatrics, one would take out a small bottle and pour a little of its contents into the tank. After grabbing the front bumper and rocking the car up and down, they drove off.

One time, some guy approached them and asked what was in the bottle. They told him about their experimental “water engine,” and that the big oil companies would stop them if they ever found out. He promised to keep the secret if they would give him a bottle.

I leave the rest to your imagination.

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I've known about DCA for a while. Some of the studies show that it is twice as effective as chemotherapy with almost no negative side-effects. There are continuing studies on this stuff, but I suspect the plan for drug companies is to make a patentable version of DCA. By the way, there are ways to get your hands on DCA. It's a plentiful substance and since the discovery was made, there have been steps taken to make it available for personal use. Orally, people are taking about 1500 milligrams a day as treatment. DCA can cause neuropathy, by the way. As a side note, oddly, caffeine seems to be a very useful complement to DCA. Weird.

http://thedcasite.com/

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The reasoning doesn't make much sense, the drug companies still produce stuff like aspirin, 'tylenol' and plenty of other generic stuff that is no longer under patent. If there is a large enough market, they can make plenty of money off of generic stuff and there is likely a huge market for cancer killing drugs.

add-on: okay, the more intelligible and academic article linked to above explains the money issue better, I still disagree that there is no profit at all to gain from it, but probably not enough for one company to bare the expense of clinical trials. His solution is intelligent and I see quite possible:

Funding for such trials would be a challenge for the academic community as DCA is a generic drug and early industry support might be limited. Fundraising from philanthropies might be possible to support early phase I - II or small phase III trials. However, if these trials suggest a favourable efficacy and toxicity, the public will be further motivated to directly fund these efforts and national cancer organisations like the NCI, might be inspired to directly contribute to the design and structure of larger trials. It is important to note that even if DCA does not prove to be the 'dawn of a new era', initiation and completion of clinical trials with a generic compound will be a task of tremendous symbolic and practical significance. At this point the 'dogma' that trials of systemic anticancer therapy cannot happen without industry support, suppresses the potential of many promising drugs that might not be financially attractive for pharmaceutical manufacturers. In that sense, the clinical evaluation of DCA, in addition to its scientific rationale, will be by itself another paradigm shift.

Also given the cost of cancer I can see the government stepping in and offering incentives much as they do for orphan drugs.

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One of the problems with dealing in drugs is that there is such a huge cost involved in development (largely because of all the FDA-mandated trials and studies) that can only be recovered if the developer can patent the drug and thus be assured of being able to control production and the price for a distinct time. All the yapping about the greedy drug companies fails to take the costs of development into consideration. If they didn't act greedy they would go out of business most ricky-tick. Their competitors, who would then be able to sell the drug far cheaper (not having a huge startup cost to pay for), but having seen the result they would not themselves be able to develop any more new drugs (or medical advances generally). Thus research would stagnate and die.

I recall reading the first chapter of the Zone Diet how the author was involved in research on a cholesterol drug derived from a plant chemical. The active ingredient, being a natural substance, was not patentable, and so the only way to survive the development of the new drug was to jigger with the molecule to make it recognizably not the original substance (and patentable) but simultaneously just as efficacious at getting rid of cholesterol. They found a re-jiggering of the molecule that was patentable and still efficacious and it looked promising. Unfortunately, the drug turned out to be way too effective and killed the experimental mice by way of vacuuming all the cholesterol out of them. Since it turns out that cholesterol is kind of required for some things, this was not optimal. The company eventually decided that line of research was not viable and abandoned it. At least, this is the story as I remember it.

I'd still like to know what the plant was.

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Interesting, Stargazer. I know there is always more to the story. I wonder if doctors can't just prescribe this drug for cancer patients if it's already available for metabolic disorders. Certainly if I had cancer I'd be a guinea pig.

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Deborah:

I wouldn't. I want my drugs to be safe and effective. Good old "Double Blind" studied.

I agree with you. However, it is a fact that what Deborah surmises is an actual practice. I don't know how widespread this is (our poster Greg Smith, a physician could perhaps comment on this), but I have read in a source I found credible (don't remember which it was, exactly) that physicians sometimes find that a drug prescribed for ailment A has an unexpected positive effect on ailment B in the same patient, leading the physician to try the medication out on their patients with ailment B if there is no real effective alternative. In one case memorable to me -- and this appeared in an article in Discover magazine (May or June 2011 issue?) -- there was a report on a man who was in a persistent vegetative state being cared for at home by his wife. He frequently became restive at night making it difficult for her to sleep, and so she sought a prescription for a sedative in those situations. When next she had need of it, she administered the drug only to find after a short time that he woke up from his unconcious state! He is now able to communicate and be aware of what is going on around him, but only when he has this drug, a sedative! in his bloodstream. A very odd turn of events, and would you insist upon a double blind study for this use of the drug, and deny this drug to the woman for this purpose until it were done? I suspect you wouldn't.

Sometimes, perhaps, rationality must take precedence over slavish devotion to rules.

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I agree with you. However, it is a fact that what Deborah surmises is an actual practice.

Indeed. I had an issue at one time where they wanted to remove my gallbladder. All my research indicated this really didn't solve the problem I had. I saw one of those shows, I think Mystery Diagnosis, where they talked about my exact problem. I did some research, copied it and gave it to my doctor who prescribed the med that was used for an entirely different condition. I had almost immediate relieve and after 6 months no longer had to take the med and my gallbladder is fine.

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My disorder, restless legs syndrome, has only had drugs specifically assigned for it the past 10 years or so, prior to that prescribing was based more on anecdotal evidence, though by the time I got involved that anecdotal evidence amounted to a great deal....but eventually the drug companies figured out that they already had drugs available (anti-parkinson drugs) that could be used for a whole lot more people though at much smaller dosages (which means safety trials would be a breeze I assume). Now I believe they are working on drugs specifically made for the disorder, but most I've seen so far are still just variations on those that patients took for other reason and then discovered it helped with the rls as well.

The problem that I read in the second link, IIRC, was that the treatment being discussed in the OP does not work for all cancers so anyone who did use it should do some hefty research into what it is and isn't good for and know the risks involved (as few things are risk free if they are strong enough to affect one's body in any significant way).

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I wouldn't. I want my drugs to be safe and effective. Good old "Double Blind" studied.
It's already proven to be a lot safer than chemo. Furthermore, the studies show it is much more effective. Unlikely to be placebo, don't you think? If placebo works twice as well as chemo, why use chemo? Just use sugar pills. ha ha
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Mordecai:

Chemo has it problems. Just as any drug has its problems. There will be a certain number of people who die from taking any drug. But the advantages of the drug outweigh the disadvantages.

Of course. Since that is the case, why not take DCA as well? Much less risk and preliminary studies show a far greater chance of recovery.
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I'm glad it work for you. But medicine just can't work on the exceptions to the rule.

Except we're not talking about something that's not been used before, only used for something different. Whatever side affects there are will already be known.

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Except we're not talking about something that's not been used before, only used for something different. Whatever side affects there are will already be known.

Unless there are side effects specifically related to the new disease or disorder.

For example, most anti-depressants and anti-anxiety would be cleared for people with rls by past tests, but they actually cause an aggravation of the disorder. Lack of regard for the side effects in specific cases can be very problematic (definitely screwed up my daughter's life when the doctor refused to consider the consequences of using an anti-anxiety drug for someone who suffers rls).

What if that side effect was the aggravation of cancer so that the intended 'cure' actually made it worse?

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From the more informative link given above:

There have been no clinical trials of dichloroacetate (DCA) in cancer patients, so there is no basis for claiming they have a cure; some, but not all, cancers might respond in promising ways to the drug, while others are likely to be resistant (cancer is not one disease!); and there are potential neurotoxic side effects, especially when used in conjunction with other chemotherapies.
http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/05/dichloroacetate_and_cancer.php
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There have been no clinical trials of dichloroacetate (DCA) in cancer patients, so there is no basis for claiming they have a cure...
That doesn't follow, first of all. Even if there were no studies to show that cancer patients respond well to DCA, scientists have been able to kill cancer cells in labs effectively in rats at double the rate of chemotherapy, and they understand why it kills cancer cells. Furthermore, DCA is already proven to be relatively safe. Certainly much safer than chemotherapy. Furthermore, anecdotal evidence for human cancer patients is piling up, which also looks promising.
Below are several papers that discuss the use of DCA in humans.

In addition to the works shown here, there is a massive collection of research done on DCA gathered in the EPA's "Toxicological Review of Dichloroacetic Acid", a 200 plus page volume listing a summary of most DCA safety and health research done as of August 2003.

Granted, the reported effects on humans do not represent clinical trials. Still, to say there is no basis for claiming they have a cure is false. There is a pretty good basis for claiming they have a superior treatment to chemotherapy that is proven to be relatively safe in humans.

Lastly, yes, you should be careful with DCA, because it may well not be effective against some cancers. It may also interact badly with certain drugs. I think that as scientists discover more about DCA and why it kills cancer cells, it may eventually lead to a cure.

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That doesn't follow, first of all.

Of course it follows. If there haven't been clinical trials, then you can't say that cancer has been cured. Rats are used as a model organism, however ultimately it comes down to how the drug will work in humans and our physiology. This doesn't detract from the importance of the in vivo studies.

Also, that article is somewhat incorrect on the point about clinical trials. There has been one clinical trial that involved five patients. As the article states-"It’s important to point out that the aim of this study was not to find out whether DCA could treat glioblastoma, but to figure out the safest dose to use for cancer patients. We already know that the drug can be safely given to humans – although it can cause side effects – but this is the first time it has been tested in people with cancer." More trials with many more patients will of course have to be done (5 patients isn't much of a clinical trial).

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Of course it follows.
There are no clinical trials proving that I like ice cream either. To say there is no basis is hogwash. You can claim that basis isn't good enough for you, sure. But to say there is no basis is absurd. Also, the initial discovery was made with human cancer cells. If we know for a fact that it kills human cancer cells, and it works well on rats, taken orally, why shouldn't we believe it will work on humans? Clearly, there is a basis and a fairly solid one.

Obviously, we can't just dismiss the anecdotal evidence for humans off-hand. It seems to be going well so far in human use, which is no surprise, given the solid basis for believing it would.

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There are no clinical trials proving that I like ice cream either.

Ok...

To say there is no basis is hogwash.

No it isn't (if we're being specific as to what I'm talking about, which is specifically the claim that they have cured cancer). It is a simple fact that they have not cured cancer (and of course we need to be specific as to which types of cancer we're talking about). Yes, there are promising results, however they have not discovered a cure. I also find this quote from the article I last linked to applicable-

"While these results are intriguing, it is unlikely that this one compound represents “the cure” for cancer – and it is also unlikely that DCA is the “wonder drug” that the headlines portray. Cancer is a complex and multi-faceted disease, and it can be caused by a range of different faults within the cell. It is unlikely that any single drug could ever treat all forms of the disease."

You can claim that basis isn't good enough for you, sure.

No, I'm merely agree with the biologists and other scientists that have commented on the issue.

But to say there is no basis is absurd.

Please be specific. I have stated, in agreement with various scientists, that the researchers in question have not cured "cancer" (as if it is some homogeneous disease). Yes, the studies so far are great, sound promising, etc. Such is how science works. In fact, I am currently working on a project on the use of porphyrinoid compounds (I specifically studied phthalocyanines but will be working with porphyrins this summer) in photodynamic therapy. PDT also shows promising results, especially in its targeted delivery, in contrast to chemotherapy and its obvious disadvantages. However no one will say that PDT has "cured cancer", and again, while DCA shows promising results in the studies done thus far, it is not a "cure", and that is what I am disputing, especially because of the lack of extensive clinical trials.

Also, the initial studies were done on human cancer cells.

Sure, and in vitro studies are different from in vivo studies. Human physiology and the pharmacodynamics related to DCA in the human system are of course important factors in these studies, and are major reasons why some drugs that show promising results in vitro end up not going further in clinical trials.

If we know for a fact that it kills human cancer cells, and it works well on rats, taken orally, why shouldn't we believe it will work on humans? Clearly, there is a basis and a fairly solid one.

No one is saying that it won't work on humans. What I and others are saying is that a cure for cancer has not yet been found, and that the media is hyping something up that even the researchers in question are not doing. "But it is too soon to say whether it will provide an effective treatment against cancer in humans, says lead author Evangelos Michelakis, a cardiologist at the University of Alberta in Edmonton." I agree with Dr. Michelakis.

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