Developer’s Meeting september 29 at 12:44 p.m. with world’s first approval for “photoimmune therapy,” a drug for new treatments for cancer
The world’s first new treatment for attacking cancer cells by shining light after it has been administered to a patient with a cancer drug combined with a chemical that reacts to light was approved for the first time in the world last week. The researcher who developed the drug told a press conference that he hoped it would be another option for cancer treatment.
Hisataka Kobayashi, a senior researcher at the National Institutes of Health in the United States, developed a treatment for cancer that combines drugs that use antibodies aimed at cancer with chemicals that respond to light, and was last week approved in Japan as the world’s first treatment for head cancer, which is difficult to treat.
On September 29, Dr. Kobayashi and Hiroshi Mikitani, Chairman of Rakuten Medical, a pharmaceutical company that developed drugs, held a press conference in Tokyo.
The drug is administered intravenously to the patient and is activated by applying near-infrared laser light from outside the body to destroy cancer cells, which is called “photoimmune therapy.”
Dr. Kobayashi, who has been studying this treatment for decades, said, “It doesn’t make sense if it doesn’t reach the patient’s hands, and I’m glad it was approved in Japan. I hope it will be another option for cancer treatment.”
Chairman Mikitani also said, “We think it will be possible to combine it with other chemotherapy. I want to deliver it to patients as soon as possible.”
The drug will be covered by medical insurance in the future, but since it was approved early, safety and efficacy will be verified even after it is sold.