Leukine and Prostate Cancer Treatment or Therapy

July 18, 2009 by  
Filed under Prostate Cancer

This article looks closely at the function or not carried out by Leukine in prostate cancer treatment.

First things first, prostate cancer is a melanoma that starts in the prostate gland as the cells begin to mutate and grow uncontrollably, creating small tumors that may spread to other parts of the body if not attended to early enough. In cancer generally, the regulation of cell growth is lost and cells grow hysterically. Body cells are constantly dividing, maturing and dying in a tightly controlled process, but cancers disrupt the process, and unlike normal cells, the growth of a cancer cells is no longer well-regulated: they now outlive the normal cells and continue to form new, abnormal cells.

Leukine is a granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor that is produced as a chemical substance called sargramostim. Macrophages and granulocytes are both white blood cell types, the previous residing in tissues to attack foreign substances and help identify harmful toxins, bacteria, and viruses; and the latter, a leukocyte that ignites and destroys foreign substances that cause poisoning, infections, and allergies in the blood. Technically, these are white blood cells components, which generally keep the body in health but do not specifically address prostate cancer in any way.

Leukine has been used for years to help in the regeneration of the human immune system by speeding up the production of these white blood cells after a bone marrow transplant. This is often necessary when a patient has undergone treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease, or acute lymphocytic leukemia, for which they might require a bone marrow transplant. In March of 1991, the FDA approved Leukine for the speedy recovery of patients undergoing autologous bone marrow transplantation for any of the above stated conditions.

In autologous bone marrow transplants treat lymphoid cancers by removing the patient’s marrow, cleansing it of malignant cells, and reinfusing it back into the patient. While the bone marrow regenerates, the patient is vulnerable to disease as a result of the absence of white blood cells. Sargramostim (Leukine or Prokine) merely speeds up the rate at which the granulocytes and macrophages are reproduced.

Physicians are however in the habit of acting on intuition from time to time, especially when they are faced with certain choices. There are instances in which they know that no other remedy might work for a patient, and they may be forced out to go on a whim. Such instances also may provide prior experience for later occasions in which they have to treat patients. As such, it is not too farfetched to have a doctor treat a prostate cancer patient by administering a medication that is used in treating lymphoma.

You however want to sit in on the decision making process and understand why the traditional prostate cancer remedies (chemotherapy, prostatectomy, radiation, etc.) were decided against. It is afterall your body, and your life at stake here.

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