Alin Foundation Cancer Research

Side Effect-Free Chemotherapy   (SEF pronounced “safe” Chemo®)

Eight million people die every year due to cancer.  The tragedy of cancer is that the treatment is often worse than the disease.  After decades of research and planning, a new therapy has been developed that greatly reduces the side effects of conventional chemotherapy, while making chemo agents more effective.  There is often less than a 30% response rate for conventional chemotherapy.  Recently, over 90% of patients have responded strongly to this new therapy.  Our hope is that one day the cure doesn't have to be worse than the disease.

For some time, a definitive cure for cancer has been just out of reach.  Researchers and clinicians know that existing drugs could be used to cure cancer if only they were not so toxic to normal tissues.  It is impossible to administer cancer medications in doses high enough to eradicate every cancer cell in the body, because at such high doses, the side effects are fatal.  All too frequently, the few remaining cancer cells spread to other areas of the body and kill the patient.

Cancer drugs have side effects because their effects are not limited to cancer cells.  The drugs kill any cells that are dividing quickly, especially cells in the bone marrow and the gastrointestinal tract.  The damage to normal tissue leads to the familiar side effects of chemotherapy.  Destruction of marrow cells leads to reduction in the number of circulating white blood cells, and increased susceptibility to infections.  Damage to the lining of the stomach and intestine causes nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.  Damage to the fast multiplying cells for your hair leads to hair loss and the list goes on.

Efforts to mitigate the effects of chemotherapy have focused on methods of delivering medications exclusively to cancer cells, but without success.  Dr. Matsumura's research took the opposite approach: He looked for a way to selectively protect normal cells from damage by cancer medications.  For most cancer medications, there are antidotes which neutralize the toxic effects.  Most of these antidotes are already FDA-approved.

Couple talks to doctor Using old FDA-approved antidotes to chemotherapy drugs, Dr. Matsumura developed a new strategy that virtually eliminates all the dosage-limiting side effects of cancer drugs.  The new therapy is called Side Effect-Free Chemotherapy (SEF Chemo®) and has achieved strong responses in cancer of the lungs, breasts, colon, prostate, pancreas, and melanoma, as well as in cancers that conventional chemotherapy has limited use in, such as soft tissue sarcoma and hepato-cellular carcinoma.

It is now possible to treat cancers without patients losing their hair, without horrible diarrhea and vomiting, and without destroying white blood cell-making marrow.  It is now possible to safely and humanely intensify the dosage of chemotherapy thereby eradicating cancer more thoroughly.  The longest survivor of SEF Chemo® has already gone nine years without recurrence.

Efforts are underway to open more regional cancer centers throughout the world with doctors and nurses trained to deliver SEF Chemo®  For more information:

Special Credit: Biologists Christi L. Ober and Scott Hsu-Storaker assisted Dr. Matsumura in the pioneering work of the new cancer therapy.  Dr. M. Rikimaru played a crucial role in enabling the laboratory breakthrough to become lifesaving.