THE LEX COLUMN: Cancer vaccines: not such a long shot
The race to find a Covid-19 jab has fast-tracked clinical trials
The world’s first therapeutic cancer vaccine was developed by a bone surgeon in the 1890s. Progress since then has been modest. But optimism is now running high thanks to a technology being developed by some front-runners in the Covid-19 vaccine race.
The aim would be cure more than prevention — evoking an immune response to fight off tumours already infecting patients. New cancer vaccines would be built using a synthetic form of messenger RNA (ribonucleic acid). These molecules carry genetic information needed to make proteins.