Re: SOC: Canadian poll on biotech issues

From: Robert Bradbury (
Date: Sun Jan 09 2000 - 08:19:41 MST

On Sat, 8 Jan 2000 wrote:

> BTW the online prediction game Foresight Exchange
> is much more pessimistic about a cure for cancer by 2010, giving it 38%
> odds, which is more in line with what seems reasonable to me.

Seeing the results of the angiogenesis inhibitors presented at the Dec. A4M
meeting, I'd say both sets of predictions may be low. There are something
like 15+ drugs in clinical trials at this point and some of them not only stop
growth but seem to reverse it. Now, like most predictions, this depends on your
definitions of "cure" and "cancer". The AIs will probably be able to
stop tumors from growing beyond certain points. Metastasis inhibitors
(metalloproteinase inhibitors that block digestion of the extracellular
matrix may do an equally good job on cancer's spreading).

So while you might not "cure" the disease, you can reduce it to a non-fatal
"managable" condition. Its worth noting that many childhood viral infections
(e.g. chicken pox) are never "cured", they are simply driven into submission
by the immune system.


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