Cuba announces launch of world's first lung cancer vax

Cuba has commenced sales of the world's first therapeutic lung cancer vaccine this week after 25 years of research at the Center of Molecular Immunology in Havana, according to Xinhua.

"The drug could turn the cancer into a manageable, chronic disease by generating antibodies against the proteins which triggered the uncontrolled cell proliferation," said Gisela Gonzalez, head researcher of the vaccine, as quoted by Xinhua. The vaccine, CimaVax-EGF, is based on "a protein we all have when cancer is uncontrolled," and will be used for stage three and stage four lung cancer patients who have not responded to traditional chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments, Gonzalez said.

For now, the vaccine remains on Cuba alone, distributed free of charge in hospitals. It will be studied for its effects in other cancer types including prostate, uterine and breast cancers.

- here's the report from Xinhua
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