Coley’s treatment / Fever treatment is a type of immunotherapy; which focuses on boosting the immune system, so it can attack cancer cells. This treatment was developed by a surgeon named William Coley and was inspired by the observation that patients who got infections after surgery did better than those who did not. Coley attributed this finding to the fact that the infection triggered the immune system to step in and provide additional support. For this treatment, dead bacteria is injected into the vein or directly into the tumor with the aim of creating a high temperature, thus stimulating the immune system which in turn kills cancer cells.
- What is Coley’s treatment for cancer?
Coley’s treatment, developed by a surgeon named William Coley, is a type of immunotherapy that focuses on boosting the immune system so it can attack cancer cells. For this treatment, dead bacteria is injected into the vein or directly into the tumor with the aim of creating a high temperature, thus stimulating the immune system which in turn kills cancer cells.
- What is Coley’s vaccine?
Coley’s vaccine, also known as Coley’s toxins, is a mixture containing toxins filtered from killed bacteria of species Streptococcus pyogenes and Serratia marcescens in order to induce similar therapeutic effects.
- How do Coley’s toxins work?
Coley’s toxins are usually administered systemically to activate a patient’s immune system; typically shaking chills and fevers. There is also a simpler and equally promising approach that involves mixing cryopreserved or fresh cancer cells lysates with Coley’s toxins and using such a mixture as an anti-cancer vaccine. Treatment can be accomplished by injecting Coley’s toxins directly into one or more visible cancer metastases, which turns the existing cancer lesion into its own vaccine.
- How long has immunotherapy been used to treat cancer?
William Coley is generally considered the father of immunotherapy. Although the link between overwhelming bacterial infections and seemingly spontaneous regression of cancer had already been suspected, Coley was the first one to describe the process of activating a patient’s immune system with bacterial toxins to mimic sepsis induced by live bacteria to treat cancer. All the way back in 1891, he first noticed that mixtures of live and inactivated Streptococcus pyogenes and Serratia marcescens could cause tumor regression in sarcoma patients.