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This Vaccine Is Believed To Be Able To Cure Cancer

This Vaccine Is Believed To Be Able To Cure Cancer

Many of us have been touched by the hardship and tragedy of cancer. That is why the prospect of a vaccination that could help in the treatment and management of cancer can elicit such strong emotions and reactions. Being able to cure a patient with a vaccine could prove to be much simpler and less harrowing than having a patient go through high doses of harsh chemo or radiotherapy.

The exciting new vaccine is being trialed in the U.K. Two people have already been given the vaccine, at Guy’s Hospital in London. One of these people is 35-year old Kelly Potter.  She was diagnosed with advanced cervical cancer last summer. Kelly says that being a participant in the study has “changed [her] life for the better,” further commenting that “it’s fantastic to be part of something that could be ground-breaking.” It is hoped that 30 patients will take part in the study over the course of a two-year period.

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About the vaccine

The vaccine is currently being given together with low doses of chemotherapy. It is believed that this combination will kill some of the tumor cells and help the immune system to function more effectively.  Those who are administering the trial believe that the vaccine could work on all types of solid tumors. They are also conducting tests to see if the vaccine is safe to use on patients with terminal cancer.

How vaccines work

The vaccines we are familiar with, that are used to protect us against certain infections, work in much the same way as the cancer vaccine.  Vaccines work by helping the immune system acquire new immunity to diseases. Acquired immunity occurs when the body learns from being exposed to a disease or illness. The body leans to recognize the disease and the next time it attempts to invade the body the immune system is set up and ready to fight off the disease.

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Vaccinations work by containing a small amount of a protein from a disease. The amount of the disease is so small that it is not harmful to the body, but it does give the immune system a chance to recognize the disease so it is prepared if it encounters it in the future.

In normal situations our immune system works to protect us against cancer by killing tumor cells. However, sometimes our immune system ‘misses’ these cancer cells. When cancer cells are not destroyed by the immune system they are left to grow and then they can work to suppress the immune system, making it less effective. Cancer can weaken the immune system by entering the bone marrow, as the bone marrow makes the blood cells that help fight infections. In some cases the tumor cells also do damage to the immune cells.

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The science behind the new cancer vaccine

The new cancer vaccine is designed to use the body’s own immune system to attack and destroy the cancer cells. There is an enzyme found in cancer cells that is involved in the division of the cancer cells. This enzyme is called human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT). The new vaccine is made up of small fragments of this enzyme. The idea is that by injecting these enzymes into a patient’s body the patient’s immune system will be stimulated to produce the antibodies that can target this enzyme, which will help in the destruction of the cancer cells.

This possible revolutionary vaccine could make a difference to many cancer sufferers. If the trial proves to be a success, then it would mean that many patients suffering from cancer will be given a much needed medical assistance and hope.

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Featured photo credit: Center of Excellence via zci-cervirvac.hr

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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