Friday, February 03, 2012

a Marissa update

Marissa's in surgery now, and her cousin Megan (see previous post for my correction: I had thought Megan was a friend, not a relative) is providing updates for the long procedure, which began this morning and is supposed to go for as long as eight hours. Here's the first such update. I won't be linking to every update that appears, so please check Marissa's blog periodically for news.

Marissa is, according to her dad (with whom I spoke at length last night), Patient #19 in a Phase I clinical trial that uses a modified version of the cold virus to attack the GBM tumor. The analogy that had been given to Brad by one of Marissa's doctors was that the tumor would essentially be catching a tailor-made cold. As the virus did its work, the tumor's cells would "explode" and propel more of the virus into neighboring tumor cells. This sounds pretty revolutionary to me. Today's surgery is about exploring what sort of progress the viral treatment has made; it's been hard to determine via MRI, partly because this particular trial is so new that the docs are still in the data-gathering stage.

I'll be keeping Marissa in my thoughts.


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