Monday, January 18, 2010

Immunotherapy Proving Effective Against Melanoma

Some people may not be aware of it, but the skin is the largest organ in the body. Its purpose is to cover and protect the different organs inside the body. Without it, the muscles, bones, and other organs will be exposed. We need the skin to hold everything together. That is why when something happens to our skin, we could be in real jeopardy.

Skin cancer is the most common form of all cancers. And melanoma is a skin cancer that is considered a deadly disease. While it only accounts for less than five percent of all skin cancers, it is the one responsible for more than 75% of skin cancer deaths.

The good news, however, is that new forms of treatment are underway which make use of the body's immune system to attack the cancer cells. While immunotherapy has had a limited role in treating cancer, it shows great potential as far as treatment for melanoma is concerned.

Survival rates for melanoma are low because it does not respond well to traditional radiation and chemotherapy once it has spread. But in rare cases, melanoma simply goes away which make scientists believe is due to an immune reaction against the cancer.

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