Is adaptive therapy natural?

Journal: PLOS Biology

Published: 2018-10-01

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2007066

Affiliations: 13

Authors: 12

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Research Highlight

Controlling cancer with evolution

© Westend61/Getty

© Westend61/Getty

Less aggressive assaults on tumours may help keep cancer cells in check without promoting the development of drug resistance.

The strategy, termed natural adaptive therapy, is modelled after the body’s own immune systems for retarding the evolution of life-threatening cancer cells. As outlined by a team co-led by scientists from Deakin University, the approach aims to enhance patient survival and quality of life by restraining tumour growth, rather than trying for all-out eradication and inadvertently accelerating the proliferation of resistant cells.

Developed through mathematical models natural adaptive therapy and computer simulations — and then validated experimentally in mouse models — natural adaptive therapy has been shown to work in men with prostate cancer. More trials are underway or planned for patients with other kinds of tumours.

The researchers highlight the promise of marrying natural adaptive principles with the latest immunotherapy drugs that have radically altered the cancer treatment landscape.

Supported content

  1. PLoS Biology 16, e2007066 (2018). doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2007066
Institutions Share
Infectious Diseases and Vectors : Ecology, Genetics, Evolution and Control (MIVEGEC), France 0.28
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, United States of America (USA) 0.17
Institut Cochin, France 0.08
Host-Pathogen-Environment Interactions (IHPE), France 0.08
Hôpital Arnaud de Villeneuve, CHU de Montpellier, France 0.08
University of Tasmania (UTAS), Australia 0.08
Deakin University, Australia 0.08
Evolution, Ecologie et Paléontologie (Evo-Eco-Paleo), France 0.04
Center for Infection and Immunity of Lille (CIIL), France 0.04
Unit for Mathematical and Computer Modeling of Complex Systems (UMMISCO), France 0.03
National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), Mexico 0.03