I like what Dr. Elaine Schattner had to say about this. The mainstay of treatment would be a cocktail of drugs, by mouth, like patients take for hepatitis C, tuberculosis or AIDS.
Cocktails have become standard treatment in many oncological protocols: concoctions of two or more powerful cytotoxic agents which supposedly will attack the tumor in different ways. The ability of various agents to kill tumor and/or microvascular cells (anti-angiogenesis) in the same tumor specimen is highly variable among the different agents. There are so many agents out there now, doctors have a confusing array of choices. They don't know how to mix them together in the right order.
A diagnosis of AIDS was a death sentence until the advent of drug cocktails in the 1990s, which helped patients suppress the disease indefinitely. Now researchers say a similar combination strategy may change the course of cancer.
The application of synergy analyses (drug cocktails) may represent one of the most important applications of the functional cytometric profiling platform, enabling the exploration of both anticipated and unanticipated favorable interactions. Equally important may be the capacity to study drug antagonism wherein two effective drugs counteract each others’ benefits. This phenomenon, characterized by the whole being less than the sum of the parts, represents a major pitfall for clinical trialists who simply combine drugs “because they can.”
These analyses are revolutionizing the way newer classes of drugs are applied and has the potential to accelerate drug development and clinical therapeutics. Good outcomes require good drugs, but better outcomes require good combinations. Intelligent combinations are a principle focus of the functional cytometric profiling platform. It strives to identify the best outcomes for patients (not populations of patients).
Arnold Glazier, M.D., former Oncology Fellow at Johns Hopkins, said in his book Cure: Scientific, Social and Organizational Requirements for the Specific Cure of Cancer," the consistent and specific cure or control of cancer will require multiple drugs administered in combination targeted to abnormal patterns of normal cellular machinery that effect or reflect malignant behavior. Finding the 'patterns' of malignant cells and developing a set of 5 to10 drugs in order to cure or control cancer."