October 24, 2018 8:25 pm
Updated: October 24, 2018 9:19 pm

BC Cancer Agency welcomes largest-ever donation

WATCH: Large donation to create new cancer research in B.C.

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The BC Cancer Agency announced the largest donation it has ever received on Wednesday.

The $18.34-million anonymous donation will go to furthering research and clinical trials of the experimental treatment known as Radioligand Therapy.

READ MORE: Detecting cancer before you ever get ill: BC Cancer Agency’s study hopes for paradigm shift

That technique uses cancer-killing radioactive isotopes that are guided to cancer cells by carrier molecules.

The therapy is still in its experimental stages, but has demonstrated promise in the treatment of metastatic prostate cancer in countries like Germany.

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Once a cancer has spread, it is particularly difficult to treat because surgery and traditional radiation therapy are no longer effective.

What’s left is chemotherapy. But that treatment can’t discriminate between healthy cells and cancerous ones, so the entire body is negatively affected.

READ MORE: BC Cancer Agency’s focus on targeted treatments pay dividends

Radioligation Therapy is different because it only targets cancer cells, thereby allowing up to 6,000 times more radiation to be used than with traditional methods.

The BC Cancer Agency hopes to begin human trials on metastatic prostate cancer in the next year.

In time, the goal is to expand research to include other forms of metastatic cancers.

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