Local Hyperthermia can induce an increase of the immune system response

hyperthermia, immune system

There are many studies that support the idea that local and body hyperthermia treatment can be a great complementary therapy to support immune therapy. Preclinical and clinical results show a great anti-tumour response when adding hyperthermia sessions. These studies are revealing a great activation of natural killers, lymphocyte T (T-cells) and dendritic cells that present the tumour antigens to the other immune cells in order to recognize the cancer cells enhance the antigen presentation when the body subjected to heat shock. Therefore the located heat improves the immune response.

This idea is not new and this mechanism was recognized since Hippocrates times since he discovered that temperature is a natural mechanism to fight many kind of infections. Nevertheless, hyperthermia treatment is being considered as another type of cancer therapy in the last few decades. Now the effects of this therapy are being studied carefully as a coadjuvant technique to improve the chemotherapy and radiotherapy results.

The first studies about hyperthermia were focused on the cytotoxic effects of high temperatures which induce directly tumor cells death (apoptosis). But apart from this direct effect, there is an indirect one which it comes to the effect that hyperthermia can carry out on the immune system cells.

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How does hyperthermia strengthen the immune system?

Moderate hyperthermia between 39-41 º Celsius has been targeted as an objet of study because of its effects on the immune system cells, and concretely on the improvement of the performance of proteins (HSPs, APCs) as mediators to bio-inform immune system cells and activate them to attack tumor cells or pathogenic microorganisms. These types of proteins are being studied in the field of the immunology. Many studies in immunology are designed to define the key role of these proteins regarding cancer cells.

For example some tests were done in relation to a specific HSP, HSP70 which can inhibit apoptosis mechanism in cancer cells in pancreas, prostate and stomach, and even these proteins can protect tumor cells from the heat shock induces by hyperthermia. So if we can affect these types of proteins and deactivate them combining immunotherapy with hyperthermia, it would be a great combination to be consider in cancer fighting strategy.

We can use the activity of these proteins as “danger signs” recognized by the immune system cells and therefore generating a proper immune response. Using heat shock or stress we can induce the expression or secretion of these proteins by the stressed tumor cells and then the immune system cells properly activated can recognized these signals and use them as a target to generate an attack.

According to studies conducted by the Biotherapy Institute of Japan in April 2008, there is a significant augmented immunological effect as a consequence of hyperthermia sessions, reporting serious injury in the malignant tumors. Natural Killers and T-cells activity has been significantly increased after performing regional or local hyperthermia sessions during the 7 days post-treatment period.

Biomedic Cline hyperthermia techniques

In Biomedic Day Clinic we have included hyperthermia treatment as a complementary cancer treatment within our multi-therapeutic program to increase the ability of our immune system cells (Dendritic cells, T-cells and Natural Killer) to destroy tumor localized tissues increasing the oxygenation of the area (through the combination of hyperthermia and intravenous oxygen therapy called Oxythermia or oxygenation treatment) and inducing natural apoptosis mechanisms in the tumor tissue.

Thus at our clinic we apply a personalized protocol according to every case and therefore we complement the conventional treatments prescribed by the oncologists all over the world with hyperthermia, oxygen therapy and immunotherapy, reducing the invasive side effects of the conventional therapies and enhancing their benefits when are applied adequately.

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