George Rebane: Cancer cure: next earthshaking news?
Stand by for the next tranche of earthshaking news. You know, the kind of report that promises to make a big impact on all our lives. Well, there’s another one of these that has come out, but has yet to make a big splash in the headlines, which today are probably more devoted to keeping the latest Trump/Pelosi brouhaha at a boil.
Remember the earthshaking news back in 1989 when a couple of scientists claimed to have cracked the code on cold fusion. Fusion energy is the holy grail of humanity’s search for a clean and virtually limitless source of power to make our civilization hum without polluting the earth with fossil fuels residues and/or fission power catastrophes.
From our high school science class most of us remember that fission power is generated by splitting atoms which releases the desired energy, along with a bunch of deadly radiation and radioactive stuff that needs to be contained and then disposed of safely. Today fission reactors around the world power everything from electric grids to big carriers and missile submarines. The other bad part about fission reactors is that their operation must be constantly controlled lest they go into an unstable meltdown like the Chernobyl disaster in 1986.
Fusion energy comes from hydrogen atoms being fused into the heavier helium atoms in an environment of extreme gravitational pressure and 10 million-degree temperatures such as occur naturally in the cores of stars including our sun. If for some reason the pressure is released or the temperature goes down, fusion stops instantly. And the only bad byproduct of controlled fusion is some high energy neutrons that tend to corrode anything that attempts to contain the process. Well, the cold fusion experiments ended as an embarrassing bust, and to date no one has made much progress on controlling “hot” or thermonuclear fusion. It’s turning out to be much more difficult to contain and harness on earth what goes on naturally all over the universe. So the arrival of fusion power has yet to shake our world.
Now, get ready for today’s earth-shaker — seatbelts please. Israeli scientists announce that they have a demonstrated cure for cancer. This ongoing development, to be completed “in a year’s time,” is reported in the Jerusalem Post and Forbes magazine. The scientists work at Accelerated Evolution Biotechnologies Ltd. (AEBi), a pharmaceutical company located in Ness Ziona, Israel. The reported cure is more than a bit mind-blowing since it can be targeted to attack all types of cancer cells. And once it kills them, the cure is permanent, there will be no lurking cancer stem cells left that will later bloom into a full-blown cancer that is so common to the disease.
But that’s not all. Using a multi-target toxin drug they named MuTaTo, AEBi reports that “Our cancer cure will be effective from day one, (the process) will last … a few weeks and will have no or minimal side-effects at a much lower cost than most other treatments on the market.”
So there you have it. Cancer is the second biggest killer of humans, passed only by cardiovascular diseases like heart attacks and strokes. And MuTaTo today promises to be the next big earth-shaker that will save the 1 in 5 men and the 1 in 6 women who will develop cancer during their lifetimes. The drug will then go into clinical testing and negotiate the usual bureaucratic obstacle course.
To help, a little politically incorrect prayer at this juncture might be in order. But overall and so far, what’s not to like about such uplifting news?
George Rebane PhD is a retired systems scientist in Nevada County and hosts the Rebane’s Ruminations blog.
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