All posts by Chris

Five Diet Tips to Avoid Issues During Conventional Cancer Treatment

When you’re undergoing conventional cancer treatment, your dietary habits and choices can play a significant role in successful therapy. Here are five valuable tips on using your diet to manage side effects and boost your immune system.

5 Tips for Eating During Cancer Treatment

1.  Radiation and chemotherapy often cause loss of appetite and taste. If you find that you’re rarely hungry, try grazing on several small snacks or meals throughout the day. Experiment with different spices and seasonings to create strong flavors.

2. Do you find yourself suffering from nausea? Citrus, ginger and peppermint oil fight digestive queasiness. Ginger tea and ginger chews will settle your stomach without filling you up. Many people find it helpful to suck on a lemon wedge.

3. Bowel habits can cover the spectrum from diarrhea to constipation. Avoid constipation by drinking plenty of water and adding fiber to your diet, whether it’s from supplements or foods like beans and fresh vegetables. Choose beverages like sports drinks, broth and fruit juices that are high in sodium and potassium to combat effects of diarrhea.

4. Vitamins and minerals are natural allies of the immune system. Cancer patients are most commonly deficient in Vitamin D, which also reduces fatigue and supports bone health. Look for milk, yogurt, cereals and other foods fortified with Vitamin D.

5. When your immune system is compromised, it’s important to avoid foods that carry a risk of illness, including sushi and lightly-cooked fish, soft-cooked eggs, unpasteurized dairy products and unwashed produce. You should also stay away from processed and fried foods, which contain high levels of hydrogenated oils that can increase inflammation.

State-of-the-Art Cancer Treatment from Issels®

Our immunotherapy treatment programs focus on the body’s internal environment as well as the tumor itself. Contact us to learn more.


What to Look for If You Think Your or a Loved One Has Cancer

Early detection can be a huge advantage for successful cancer treatment. Do you think you or a loved one may be suffering from cancer? Here are some of the primary signs and symptoms to watch for.

Difference Between Signs and Symptoms

While they may seem like the same thing, there is an important difference between signs and symptoms.

*Signs are measurable conditions, such as a fever, that can be observed by another person.

*Symptoms are detectable only by the person who is actually experiencing them. Pain and fatigue fall into this category.

Keep in mind that many signs and symptoms may be temporary and caused by something other than cancer. Be sure to consult a doctor if these conditions become exacerbated or don’t go away over time.

Possible Signs and Symptoms of Cancer

*Fatigue or tiredness that is not relieved by rest

*Significant weight loss or gain (10+ pounds) with no apparent cause

*Eating and digestive problems, including lack of appetite, stomach pain, nausea and vomiting or constipation, diarrhea or other changes in bowel habits

*Swelling, thickening or lumps in the breast or any part of the body

*Sudden unexplained pain that becomes more serious or continues to linger

*Changes in skin features, such as a new mole or altered appearance in an existing one, a sore that refuses to heal or a yellowish color in skin or eyes

*Chronic coughing and hoarseness

*Bleeding or bruising that appears suddenly without reason

*Pain or blood in the urine, or increase or decrease in frequency of urination

*Fever or night sweats


*Vision or hearing problems

Issels®: The Leader in Personalized Cancer Treatment

With our state-of-the-art immunotherapy cancer treatment, even many patients with advanced cancer have achieved long-term remission. Contact us to see how Issels® can help you or your loved one.

You Must Take Care of Yourself While Caring for a Cancer Patient

When you’re caring for a loved one who is undergoing cancer treatment, it’s easy to put them first while losing sight of your own needs. While that feeling is understandable, taking care of yourself benefits both you and the patient.

What Is a Caregiver?

Many cancer patients receive treatment on an outpatient basis, meaning they still spend significant portions of time at home. “Caregiver” is generally used to refer to an unpaid friend or family member who tends to a patient’s day-to-day needs.

Caregiving can include anything from feeding, dressing and bathing a patient to providing transportation, handling finances and attending cancer treatment appointments. For many people, these duties are over and above the needs of themselves and other family members they may be responsible for.

Tips for Self-Care 

Caring for a cancer patient can be deeply fulfilling, but it may also be physically, mentally and emotionally draining. Here are some helpful ways to maintain your energy and spirits.

*Be sure to schedule time for personal activities you enjoy. This could include lunch with a friend, reading a good book or taking a walk.

*Don’t be afraid to seek support. There are a number of peer groups for caregivers, as well as counselors who specialize in this issue. If you’re religious or spiritual, this can be another avenue for support.

*Ask other friends and family members for help when the load gets to be too much. It’s neither feasible nor advisable to handle everything on your own.

*Keep up your strength and morale by eating a healthy diet. Plan regular meals with balanced nutrition.

First-Class Immunotherapy Programs from Issels®

At Issels®, we understand that cancer treatment involves more than just fighting the tumor. Contact us to learn more about our individual immunotherapy protocols and read patient testimonials.

Chemicals Found in Leafy Greens May Prevent Colon Cancer

The number of colon cancer cases in the U.S. has been on the rise, especially among younger adults. Since effective cancer treatment for this disease can be hard to achieve, scientists are looking for better ways to prevent colon cancer. Vegetables might prove to be one way to reduce the risk of this disease.

Vegetable Chemicals and Gut Health

Researchers conducting a study on mice found that chemicals in certain vegetables, such as broccoli and cabbage, might play a key role in preventing colon cancer. These chemicals were found that help reduce the risk of gut inflammation and the development of colon cancer in mice.

The mice in this study were genetically modified and unable to naturally produce a certain protein that guards against gut inflammation. Scientists fed these mice vegetables containing chemicals needed to produce this protein and found that they did not develop colon cancer. The mice that were not fed these vegetables did not have this same protection and readily developed gut inflammation and colon cancer.

Colon Cancer Prevention in Humans

While the results of this study offer some hope, it’s important to keep in mind that they worked on mice. Further studies are needed to determine if the same results are found in humans. However, eating vegetables in general is considered a good way to boost your health and well-being.

Some studies have found that vegetables appear to offer protection against cancer in humans. Eating a healthy diet that includes these vegetables while also avoiding unhealthy foods may help reduce the risk of colon cancer and other cancers.

If you’re exploring cancer treatment options for colon cancer or other forms of cancer, please contact Issels® today. We can provide details on our immunotherapy modalities that are used to treat different kinds of cancer.

Researchers Learn How to Make Large Quantities of Immune Cells for Cancer Vaccines

Immunotherapy for cancer is all about boosting a patient’s natural defense systems. Thanks to a breakthrough by researchers at Mount Sinai Medical Center in NYC, scientists are now able to generate certain immune cells outside the body.

The Role of Dendritic Cells

Dendritic cells serve as an early warning system for the immune system. These cells give the signal to “arm” the system with disease-specific weapons. A major plus is that dendritic cells can attack all forms of cancer while causing few side effects.

Unfortunately, the down side is that dendritic cells are normally in short supply. Extracting them from patients to use in immunotherapy for cancer proves to be a difficult, time-consuming and expensive process.

Dendritic Cells and Immunotherapy

The research team at Mount Sinai discovered a way to grow human dendritic cells in vitro. According to Nina Bhardwaj, MD, PhD, Director of Immunotherapy at the Tisch Cancer Institute at Mount Sinai’s Icahn School of Medicine, the ability to generate these cells on a large scale opens the door for extensive studies of potential applications in highly refined cancer vaccines.

In another promising development, the study also provided insight into notch signaling. This biological pathway plays a major role in generating cDC1, which is the optimum dendritic cell for cancer vaccines. The team discovered that some current treatments disrupt notch signaling, which interferes with the immune system’s efficiency in fighting tumors.

Benefits of this study are twofold. In addition to applications for cancer treatments, the information may help prevent organ transplant rejection, which is another function of the immune system.

Longtime Leaders in Immunotherapy for Cancer

Issels® has long been in the forefront with dendritic cell therapy. Our non-toxic treatments are created to meet each patient’s individual needs. Contact us for more information.

Will an Immune Profile Show if Immunotherapy Will be an Effective Cancer Treatment?

At Issels®, our cancer immunotherapy programs are tailored to fit a patient’s specific needs. Scientist have identified an immune profile that could lead to improved methods of determining which patients may benefit from treatment.

Building a Team of “Allies”

While T cells in the immune system are equipped to fight tumors, cancer cells frequently neutralize them by triggering the response that shuts T cells down. Checkpoint inhibitors are a form of immunotherapy that counteracts the process, enabling T cells to resume their job of attacking cancer cells.

Matthew “Max” Krummel, PhD, a leader in the field of immunotherapy, explains why his team broadened their focus to include other immune cells. They studied every type of cell in tumors to determine which ones could also activate T cells, forming a community of “allies.”

Boosting the T Cell Immune Response

Krummel, a member of the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, led his team in identifying a special class of dendritic cell, which they refer to as stimulatory dendritic cells, or SDCs. In subsequent studies, they found that both mice and humans with tumors had a poor response to checkpoint inhibitors if they lacked SDCs.

The research team went on to explore why different patients have different SDC levels. They discovered a direct correlation between levels of a specific cytokine, expressed by natural killer cells, and levels of SDC.

Kevin Barry, PhD and leader of the latest study, said the results hold promising implications for two applications. NK cells and SDCs could be used as biomarkers to predict successful immunotherapy, while increasing NK cell levels in other patients could improve their response to treatment.

State-of-the-Art Cancer Immunotherapy

For years, Issels® has been a leader of integrating dendritic and NK cells in our cancer immunotherapy treatments. Contact us to learn more.