One of the biggest challenges that we are facing in this 21st century is cancer. There are several types of cancer from mouth cancer to blood cancer to lung cancer and there are several other cancers that people are battling with. When it comes to curing of cancer, our mechanism and knowledge are not enough to provide us with the cure for such a deadly disease. Fortunately, over the past few years, our mechanism and knowledge in relation to the treatment of cancer have improved greatly and there are several new approaches that have been devised in order to tame the immune system to be able to fight cancer.
The most popular type of death caused by cancer is lung cancer and research has been carried out and it has been shown that with an early diagnosis of lung cancer through innovative technology, deaths caused by it will greatly reduce. There are also numerous new technologies that have been developed with the promise of aiding the immune system to be able to identify and to also attack the tumour cells as shown below.
1. Advanced scanners
As a way of imaging the lungs and how far the disease has gone, several researchers and scientist have combined forces and they are developing tools that are more precise. One such approach that seems very promising is the use of krypton gas in order to dramatically improve the image received from Magnetic Resonance Imaging(MRI). There is also another scanner that has been developed which generates images of a high resolution of the lung tissue actual motion and also how the airflow of the lungs is and this gives a new window on how severe the disease is.
2. New biomarkers
Previously, doctors that were fighting with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and several other diseases have been seen to lack biological indicators. Biological indicators are a great tool when it comes to revealing the extent a disease has gone and the speed at which the disease is spreading and worsening. There are new biomarkers that have been developed such as the Aα-Val360. The Aα-Val360 has been shown to measure accurately the severity of emphysema and COPD. This tool has been offering a guide to treatment that is very effective.
3. Mobile sensors
The healthcare has been revolutionized by tiny mobile devices that are linked to smartphones and this greatly aid in monitoring patients from blood sugar to heart rhythms. Additionally, these tools also have the ability to diagnose several diseases with a tool that is like a star-trek. With lung cancer, a similar device has been developed known as SpiroSmart. This tool enables you to be able to monitor how your lungs are functioning and all you just need to do is to blow into your phone. There are also several other tools and smartphone apps that have been similarly used and are seen to help people to manage their asthma better.
4. Inhaled drug delivery advances
In most cases when fighting asthma, COPD or any other disease of the lungs, inhaling the drug into the lung when in need is the commonly used delivery option. However, with the approaches used with the existing drug delivery systems, they seem to have limitations such as the amount of drug that can be delivered to the lungs efficiently and effectively. The major challenge is that much of the drug that is to be delivered is most likely to get stuck in the throat before it reaches the lungs. This limits the effectiveness of this delivery system and there are several side effects that arise. But with recent technologies, scientists have now been able to develop dry powder that is now able to be delivered to the airways of the patients much more efficiently. An example of such an approach is PUR0200, which has been developed by Mylan and Pulmatrix.
5. Drug regimes
One of the major reasons why there no seen changes when it comes to treatments of some diseases is that the current medications that are being used are not effective. What then should be done when the existing drugs seem to be ineffective or maybe they are just a little bit effective? With the recent clinical trial, there is an indication that a pirfenidone, an oral drug that is known to affect the biological pathway that results in the scarring of lungs directly is an effective treatment that aids to slow down the progression of lung cancer.
There are millions of people who have died of lung cancer and there are others who are still suffering from this deadly disease. However, the financial cost and the suffering of people with lung cancer has resulted in several innovative technologies that will aid in the diagnosis, monitoring and the treatment of this disease and this will greatly reduce the financial and human toll that we are having.