A Vaccine Just 'Wiped Out' Breast Cancer In A Florida Patient

It's the first successful trial on a human.

A woman in Jacksonville, Florida says a vaccine helped remove cancer cells from her body.

Lee Mercker was diagnosed with breast cancer in March. Presented with her options to battle the early-stage cancer, she opted to become the first person to use a vaccine — a series of shots — to stop the cancer from spreading. Administered at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, the shots apparently worked.


"We saw some evidence of elimination of the tumor, as well as some evidence of the immune system crowding in," Dr. Keith Knutson, from the Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, told Fox 10

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Knutson said that the results of the first human trial were exactly what the team was hoping would happen, and they seemed surprised it happened in their first-ever human trial. Mercker still had a double mastectomy, as a cautionary measure, but said she felt like she "walked on the moon" and helped pioneer a new frontier.

"I worked in an industry with tons of women and I saw all kinds of stories, and it'd just be really nice to stamp this [breast cancer] out," Mercker told Fox 10

Two other patients are now using the vaccine. While there are still plenty of trials, testing and development to do, this trial is giving the Mayo Clinic hope a cancer vaccine is close to reality.

"Really, a vaccine against breast cancer and I think it's only a matter of time myself," Dr. Knutson said.


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