How Cancer Starts Video
Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs)
Circulating tumor cells are cancer cells which have broken away from the primary tumor and entered the blood stream where they circulate and have the potential to generate metastatic disease. These cells can be isolated and identified and there is growing interest in their detection for the following purposes:
- detect early signs of a developing cancer,
- help to monitor existing cancers,
- produce an individual profile of which cancer drugs and which natural substances can be used to achieve the best treatment outcomes.
Cancer Stem Cells (CSCs) or Tumor Initiating Cells (TICs)
Circulating cancer stem cells represent a distinct subpopulation of CTCs that possess the tendency to cause metastatic disease. As compared to non-aggressive CTCs, circulating CSCs may be capable of evading primary tumor treatment, while also hiding from the immune system, surviving in the circulating blood and subsequently forming metastases in distant organs. Thus, circulating CSCs are characterized by their invasive characteristics and are potential therapeutic targets for preventing disease progression.
Research Genetics Cancer Center (RGCC) Group was established in 2004 by Dr. Ioannis Papasotiriou. The company is a pioneering, innovative organization working in the fields of medical genetics and, in particular, cancer genetics, chemosensitivity and chemo-resistance testing and in Research and Development within the pharmaceutical industry via RGCC Pharma Ltd. The company headquarters are in Switzerland, and the brand new, state-of-the art laboratories in Northern Greece are equipped with the most up-to-date technological, advanced and innovative equipment. RGCC has performed over 1800 tests since 2004.
RGCC isolates the CTCs using a technology called flow cytometry in order to obtain a sample of 97-99% pure cells that are 99% viable for further testing, such as molecular analysis, immunophenotyping, gene expression assays and sensitivities to various agents. There are numerous new labs arriving on the CTC testing scene using various technologies, mostly providing only CTC counts and basic gene expression data.
RGCC Group offers general assays for CTCs and for specific cancers including breast, colorectal, prostate, lung, melanoma and sarcomas. The test if performed from a simple blood sample and results are completed in 3-4 weeks.
RGCC Testing and Treatment
Dr Rollins has been using the RGCC tests since 2013 and has trained with RGCC. Ideally we get initial testing with Oncotrace to get genetic markers, CTC count, and determine that only one cancer type is present. This is almost always followed with one of the Onconomics panels to get sensitivities. We recommend repeating the Oncotrace or cancer specific Oncotrail tests every 3-4 months to follow progress and repeat Onconomics panel annually.
The extracts used in RGCC testing are brand specific and where possible we recommend using the exact brands used in sensitivity testing. Due to multi-drug/extract resistance and competitive inhibition at receptor sites, we recommend a rotation schedule for supplements. E.g. We pick from the highest ranking extracts and rotate a few single supplements for a month, then switch supplements on a monthly basis. Usually we have 3-4 months of rotation then return to month one and start the rotation over again. Detailed treatment plans are provided for our patients.
RGCC Test Menu
Screening test for presence of cancer or follow up for CTC count. Provides information on the presence and the concentration of CTCs. It enumerates only the progenitor cells that are relevant to potent relapse and recurrence of the disease. (about $1250) Oncocount Sample Report
Initial test if certain, or suspicious, of cancer. Reports the number of CTC’s, any positive CSC’s, and the CD markers and immunophenotype of these cells. Oncotrace (or Oncotrail) can be ordered every 3-4 months to follow progress. It allows you to check the cell count to confirm it’s going down but also allows you to see if specific genetic markers are turning on or off. This test is often ordered first and if positive one can then order the Onconomics panels. (about $1450) Oncotrace Sample Report
Use as a follow up when you have a positive diagnosis for any of the following types of cancers (breast, prostate, colon, GI, lung, melanoma, carcinoma). Provides information about the presence of CTCs and their concentration and immunophenotype for specific types of malignancies. This test is a tailor-made test for specific type of malignancies and includes only markers relevant for a specific type of malignancy which make the test a good tool for follow up control. (about $1550) Oncotrail Breast Sample Report
This includes the chemosensitivity/chemoresistance assessment for cytotoxic drugs, monoclonal antibodies, and small molecules that inhibit specific targets eg. (TKI, etc.). No natural substances are tested. This test also provides information for about 80 tumor related genes that show characteristics about the CTCs behavior which can then be targeted for treatment. (about $2000) Onconomics Sample Report
This test includes only the assessment of natural substances and plant extracts for anticancer potency. No chemotherapeutic agents tested and no tumor suppressor genes tested. In addition to the standard 50 natural substances you can also custom select 5 additional substances to test. (about $2400) Onconomics Extracts Sample Report
This test is both the Onconomics and Onconomics Extracts. The most complete and the most information for personal cancer care and support. (about $3100)
Circulating Tumor Cell Numbers
Below the index of markers on the Oncocount, Oncotrace, and Oncotrail you will find the number of CTCs. If the number is over the limit this would equal advanced or progressive disease, and if the number is less than limit this would equal early disease or response to treatment. The index of markers follows:
Breast cancer < 5cells /7.5ml, Prostate cancer < 20cells/ml, Sarcoma <15cells/6.5ml, Colon cancer <5cells/ml, Lung cancer <10cell/ml. All cancer types other than those listed above should be <5 cells/ml.
These numbers are the upper limits for these type cancers. Meaning, the lower the number the less likely they will have a metastases or recurrence. The only normal number is zero (0) cells found. And after starting therapy you want to see the numbers decrease and the genetic phenotypes start turning beneficial as well.
From a purely clinical aspect, our first goal is to get the CTC count below 5 cells/unit and the next goal is to get the numbers below 2 cells/unit.
Advanced testing and treatments from RGCC
These therapies are very specific and made personally for each patient. This is truly personalized care at its finest, scientifically based and requires many steps to get the product made correctly, then get this to your health care provider as quickly as possible and on time.
Supportive Oligonucleotide Technique (SOT) has been shown to be a very supportive treatment for cancer. SOT has the ability to induce apoptosis (cell death) in CTCs, CSCs and primary tumor cells. From a blood sample the CTCs are identified then a small molecule call microRNA is developed to match exactly into the key portion of the cancer cell that controls cell death. The SOT in injected intravenously, spreads throughout the body including past the blood-brain barrier, embeds into the cancer and will disrupt the ability of the cancer to replicate. SOT has a stealth like ability to avoid destruction and will work 24/7 to fight cancer for as long as 6 months. Repeat blood samples are used to create new SOT molecules that account for cancer cell mutations.
Dendritic Cell Therapy or Immune Support Therapy, harnesses the power of dendritic cells by exposing them to circulating tumor cells from the blood of a patient with cancer, focusing the dendritic cells on antigen targets from the cancer cells. The dendritic cell population is then multiplied into millions of immune sentries and infused back into the patient. This stimulates the immune system to ramp up the attack on the cancer and also provides a long lasting immune memory that will keep the system vigilant in fighting the cancer. Dendritic Cell Therapy – Comprehensive Guide 2022
VAX-Q-RE or Autologous Adoptive Cellular Therapy, is similar to dendritic cell therapy, but designed for more advanced cancers of at least stage 2B. Instead of the patients dendritic cells recognizing and determining the cancer cell antigen targets, the scientists need to use synthesized peptides designed specifically to mount an immune response against tumor proteins. This is due to the immune system being suppressed with more advanced cancers. VAXO-Q-RE – Comprehensive Guide 2022
CD-34-iPSC (induced Pluripotent Stem Cells)