Biotech treatments an alternative for “non-curable” diseases

SANTIAGO .- Going beyond remedies that reduce the symptoms of common cold or heal common ailments, there are now treatments that target those diseases that still haven’t found a medical solution. It is here that biotechnology offers an little known but no less effective alternative.

These are drugs that have as their primary mission support to attack serious symptoms and complications of these diseases and improve the quality of life of the patients. Synvisc One, for example, is a medical treatment to treat osteoarthritis or the wear of the knee cartilage, which most commonly occurs in older adults and young athletes or patients with significant degrees of obesity.

It was recently launched in Chile at a seminar organized by the Genzyme lab, it is administered with an injection and restores the lubrication and shock absorbing characteristics of the synovial fluid in the joints, providing pain relief from one to two weeks and provides an effect that lasts about six months.

According to Wayne Marshall, MD, University of Toronto, “this type of medicine has existed for 15 years or so, but patients had to receive the injection three or more times and the improvement was for a shorter time. Synvisc One on the other hand is injected only once and relieves pain and provides a solution for much longer time, it also helps because patients don’t need to take pills that can produce significant gastrointestinal problems. In short, it improves their quality of life. ”

Another drug in this category is Thyrogen used on patients with thyroid cancer who when the disease is detected need to undergo the total removal of the organ, having to receive thyroid hormone replacement therapy to lead a normal life.

Like any cancer patients should use ongoing assessments to determine possible re-emergence of cancer cells that otherwise are very hard to detect. These tests require the patient to stop their thyroid hormone treatment to help in the detection of the carcinogenic cells, which causes severe hypothyroidism for several weeks.

Thyrogen’s function is based on stimulating the presence of a protein called serum thyroglobulin that can easily identify any cancerous thyroid cells without the need to discontinue the patient’s hormonal treatment and reducing the potential serious effects of hypothyroidism, thus not affecting the patient’s life quality.

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