How do traditional cancer treatments work?

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Offline thedoc

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How do traditional cancer treatments work?
« on: 06/11/2012 17:39:01 »
Hey Chris,

Thanks so much for a great podcast!

My question is regarding the actual chemicals used in chemotherapy treatments for cancer. I understand the basic nature of the therapy as a poison that mostly affects the cancer cells, but I'm curious as to the specific chemicals that are used. Have the same chemicals been used for a long time, or are new one always being added/replaced? How many different chemicals are actually used in the treatment, or is it just one super-drug? Are different chemicals used for different types of cancer?

Asked by Kevin Wolz

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« Last Edit: 06/11/2012 17:39:01 by _system »


Offline ATremor

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What chemicals are used in Chemotherapy?
« Reply #1 on: 17/01/2010 20:29:17 »
That's hard to say since there are more than 100 kinds of chemotherapy drugs in use today. However, most of them fit into four categories: alkylating agents, vinca alkaloids, cytotoxic antibiotics and anti-metabolites. They all attack and kill cells that are dividing and multiplying, but each does so at a different stage. Because of this, chemotherapy regimens consist of drugs from more than one of these categories.