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Cure For Radiation Sickness Found?

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the since-my-fallout-with-you dept.

Medicine 385

Summit writes "A scientist has claimed to have discovered a radioprotectant that all but eliminates acute radiation sickness even in cases of lethal doses of radiation in tests on rats and monkeys, when injected up to 72 hours after exposure. They also claim the drug, a protein, has no observed negative effects in humans. They have not irradiated any people just yet, but if this turns out to be true, it could mean everything from curing cancer to making manned interplanetary space expeditions feasible... not to mention treatment for radiation exposures in nuclear/radiological accidents/attacks. If this drug works, it would mean a true breakthrough as past experiments with radioprotectants were not particularly promising in any respect." The only source for the story at this time is an exclusive in YNet News, a site with the subtitle "Israel At Your Fingertips." Such a radioprotectant would be huge news for Israel. Make of it what you will.

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OMG! (5, Funny)

Flea of Pain (1577213) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728881)

Finally I can get my hands on some sweet, sweet, Radaway!

Re:OMG! (1)

Jesterace (914041) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728905)

Lol I was thinking of the same thing. Good ol Fallout!

Re:OMG! (1)

Creepy (93888) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729021)

kinda RadX and RadAway all rolled into one, but tagging already figured that out. Tim Cain and Co were prescient.

Re:OMG! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729239)

Hehe, the very instant I read the headline I knew it'd be tagged Radaway. Things like this is why I love /.

Re:OMG! (2, Funny)

EnterDaMatrix (845617) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729015)

Now we just need Rad-X

Re:OMG! (2, Funny)

TuaAmin13 (1359435) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729079)

Actually, I want some Nuka-cola. I mean, it's still consumable after 200 years in a barren wasteland.

Re:OMG! (4, Funny)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729513)

In a game that lets you consume mutant rat meat, I think that the 200 years in a barren wasteland has influenced the definition of "consumable."

Re:OMG! (1)

Kell Bengal (711123) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729571)

It's the softdrink of the post-apocalyptic world: warm and flat.

Why do Jews outperform Africans? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729469)

This anti-radiation medicine is truly amazing. It also begs the question: Why do ethnic Jews outperform ethnic Africans?

Faced with centuries of discrimination, Jews and, in particular, Ashkenazi Jews [economist.com] responded by working 20% harder than the general population. Those who were very smart survived. Those who could not compete in these harsh conditions died. Over centuries, these evolutionary pressures significantly boosted Jewish intelligence.

In general, Europeans and Asians are the folks who migrated out of Africa to reach geographic endpoints: Poland, England, Russia, Japan, etc. The migration subjected these folks to harsh climatic conditions. Those who were sufficiently smart survived. Those who lacked adequate intelligence died. Over thousands of years, these evolutionary pressures significantly boosted European and Asian intelligence.

By contrast, Africans -- in their comfortable, warm environment that did not have any natural disasters -- did not endure any evolutionary pressures to boost intelligence.

Nearly 100% of science and technology was developed by Europeans and Asians. A disproportionate share of the technical contributions were accomplished by Jews.

IQ tests consistently show that Jews and -- in particular -- Ashkenazi Jews are above average in intelligence. Ashkenazi Jews have the highest IQ among ethnic groups. The difference between Ashkenazi-Jewish IQ and typical European IQ is about 7 points.

By contrast, African IQ is about 15 points below European or Japanese IQ.

Note that IQ tests are not biased in favor of "Whites". The Japanese achieve the same IQ score that the Europeans achieve.

Clearly, the folks with the lowest intelligence are Africans. They accomplished almost nothing. Africa is a wasteland. If a European marries an African, then the European condemns her child to lower intelligence.

Re:Why do Jews outperform Africans? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729507)

If a European marries an African, then the European condemns her child to lower intelligence.

Perhaps, but she get's a far better, errr... "nuptial experience".

Re:Why do Jews outperform Africans? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729567)

If your sole criteria for choosing a mate for offspring is based on IQ then in time Darwin will show you what he meant by "fittest". You're probably at the end of your bloodline already. Good luck surviving evolution.

YNet isn't the only one who's picked it up.. (5, Informative)

bishiraver (707931) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728883)

Actually, the BBC has a less slanted article: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7341336.stm [bbc.co.uk]

Re:YNet isn't the only one who's picked it up.. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729065)

Nice to see a second source.

I was puzzled when I first read, "They also claim the drug, a protein, has no observed negative effects in humans. They have not irradiated any people just yet..." but now, it seems they make the claim of no negative effects without any radiation. While nice, that doesn't precisely predict no negative effects WITH radiation.

I'm always a little skeptical when a medical announcement is made by a corporation.

Re:YNet isn't the only one who's picked it up.. (2, Funny)

Goffee71 (628501) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729377)

Sorry for the off-topic but...
the BBC story doesn't have that lovely lady in the advert for the Daily Maccabiah (hope y'all can see it). All radiation stories should be full of such bountifulness.

Re:YNet isn't the only one who's picked it up.. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729485)

jewfag.

Jewish-American (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729461)

Yes, it's quite weird that they ynet article feels it necessary to cite the scientist's religion. Does it really matter? I hear of news, a discovery, etc, my first thought is "where is this?" not "gee, what book does this person worship?"

Re:YNet isn't the only one who's picked it up.. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729581)

Ynet is Israel's top news site, owned by the most popular newspaper, Yedioth Achronoth (don't you love it when Hebrew names sound like mythical monsters?).
The story is on the front page of the paper today as well. I can vouch for the site and newspaper's credibility (I actually worked there many many years ago), but not for this story.

Better Article & 2008 Shareholder Report (5, Interesting)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728893)

There's more information on Medical News today [medicalnewstoday.com] if anyone wants a more medical take on this and a less ... Israeli interpretation (I don't know about you but I'm not too hung up on what nationality the researchers are and am more so interested in the technical details). Their 2008 annual report [corporate-ir.net] sheds a lot of insight on this as well. Although this information has been public knowledge since the beginning of the year, it should be interesting to watch their stock fluctuate [google.com] throughout today.

Re:Better Article & 2008 Shareholder Report (2, Informative)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729285)

From what I am reading, the company which discovered it has radiation protection as a specialty but this drug is only loosely related to this. This molecule is showing good result in tumor treatments (31 subjects with a prostate cancer took it, 50% of them stabilized or had their tumor decrease)

Re:Better Article & 2008 Shareholder Report (4, Informative)

reverseengineer (580922) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729537)

That Medical News Today article is about a different set of experimental drugs from the same company. The article is also from January. It is interesting though that Cleveland BioLabs is basically developing drugs that work on the process of apoptosis in opposite ways. The "Curaxins" described in the Medical News Today article are cancer drugs that promote apoptosis, while CBLB502, their experimental anti-radiation damge drug, seems to work to prevent it.

Re:Better Article & 2008 Shareholder Report (1)

vojtech (565680) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729643)

Actually, the article on Medical News is about a different, yet also remarkable anti-cancer drug from the same company.

RadAway (0, Redundant)

Arthurio (1392181) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728899)

Finally we'll have RadAway! ... Now all we need is a good old nuclear fallout and the world will be perfect.

Re:RadAway (1)

Vortexcycle (1600003) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728917)

Damn! And here I was hoping to make the Fallout reference...

Re:RadAway (1)

evilkasper (1292798) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729413)

I just hope I don't get stuck in the vault with the puppets....

Finally (1)

BaseLineNL (822690) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728907)

Now I can throw away my tin foil hat!

Re:Finally (4, Funny)

Dolohov (114209) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728973)

Dude, no! Now you need it more than ever, because they're not afraid of accidentally irradiating your brain while they read your thoughts!

I doubt it... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28728913)

No publication in a real scientific or medical journal.

Further, radiation sickness is difficult to fix. You've got alpha, beta & gamma particles bombarding cells, causing damage all over the place. Chemical bonds are broken, energy is added, and new chemical bonds form.

I really doubt a magic bullet can exist for the many types of cellular damage that can occur in different body systems.

Re:I doubt it... (0)

A. B3ttik (1344591) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728957)

The body will quickly heal itself if you can remove the offending energetic particles.

Re:I doubt it... (4, Interesting)

Robert1 (513674) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729283)

No it won't. The damaged is caused by radiation which destroys DNA. Radioactive particles that are helium or larger are stopped by your skin. Smaller particles ionize organic molecules within your body producing highly reactive radicals. Maybe its these radicals you call energetic particles? Anyway even if you remove them the DNA damage from the radiation is still there, and often the extent of the radical damage is beyond the coping mechanism of the cell. Acute damage is in the radiation, radical damage is the slow damage of aging.

Like the GP said, the methods of radiation damage are diverse, it is impossible for there to exist a single pill that treats it from all these aspects. The pill would need to be a cluster of several different types of DNA repair enzymes (to repair DNA damage from all the possible ways of bond damage), as well as being an antioxidant (to absorb radicals) and some sort of protein 'digestant' (to remove the denatured proteins). Since the body took 3+ billion years to come up a couple dozen enzymes to fulfill these purposes, it seem unlikely (downright impossible!) that a single molecule could be created to take their place.

Re:I doubt it... (2, Insightful)

v1 (525388) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729051)

and then there's also the DNA getting chopped up and shuffled around

Re:I doubt it... (1)

cpricejones (950353) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729483)

I echo this sentiment. DNA mutations are difficult to repair because the repair machinery itself makes mistakes. I.e., it's better for the cell to have a mutation than to die due to a double-strand break.

Re:I doubt it... (4, Informative)

nyctopterus (717502) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729499)

It's published in Science according to the BBC [bbc.co.uk] . Jokes about tabloids aside, Science is a real scientific journal.

Re:I doubt it... (5, Informative)

Felgerkarb (695336) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729631)

Here [nih.gov] is a link to an article about a radioprotective protein by the professor listed in the TFA.

LMGTFY (Re:I doubt it...) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729641)

No publication in a real scientific or medical journal.

LMGTFY:

http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q=Andrei+Gudkov

gives more than 600 results, including papers in Nature and Science.

I need a car analogy... (1)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728923)

Kidding, kidding.

I wonder if this could be used to help cancer patients who are undergoing radiation treatment.

Hell, it's early, so I may not be thinking correctly, but it seems to me like a little dose of this would go a long way to curing the horrible side effects of cancer treatment.

Re:I need a car analogy... (2, Funny)

Shatrat (855151) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728967)

This sounds like trying to fix a fading/cracked dashboard with a fuel additive.

Re:I need a car analogy... (2, Funny)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729101)

Hmmm.

But my muffler flaps help me get an additional 207 stone to the pint highway miles.

Re:I need a car analogy... (3, Insightful)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728985)

Hell, it's early, so I may not be thinking correctly, but it seems to me like a little dose of this would go a long way to curing the horrible side effects of cancer treatment.

And possibly make the treatment quite ineffective, if it also works on cancer cells.

Re:I need a car analogy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729645)

If only there were some sort of written material that would address questions like that...

(In lab tests, they've found so far that tumor cells don't appear to be protected.)

Re:I need a car analogy... (2, Interesting)

v1 (525388) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729005)

I wonder if this could be used to help cancer patients who are undergoing radiation treatment.

Radiation is a good way to cause cancer. Radiation does damage not only to cell structures, but also does irreversible damage to DNA, which can cause cancer. People being treated for severe radiation poisoning may survive only to find they are plagued by repeated development of cancerous tumors all over their body.

Alive still, but not nearly the rosegarden of living that the casual headline reader would envision.

Re:I need a car analogy... (4, Insightful)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729075)

Radiation is a good way to cause cancer.

If you already have cancer, then developing another type of it one or two decades down the road is the least of your worries.

Re:I need a car analogy... (4, Informative)

a_nonamiss (743253) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729235)

I know this is ./, but seriously, RTFA. It's all in there.

Yes, it would be an effective way to treat cancer. That's why it's being developed.
No, it doesn't affect the cancer cells, too.
In the studies, the potential to actually cause cancer is being investigated. In testing so far, it hasn't happened.

Re:I need a car analogy... (1)

RingDev (879105) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729557)

In the studies, the potential to actually cause cancer is being investigated. In testing so far, it hasn't happened.

To someone with Stage 4 cancer and an aggressive chemo schedule, I would take a guess that the odds of the medicine causing a new cancer while allowing them to be healthy and destroy the existing cancer is of minimal concern.

-Rick

Re:I need a car analogy... (1)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729575)

Oh sure, bring my secret shame to light. The truth is, I can't read. So RTFA is not an option.

72 hours after exposure? (3, Interesting)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728933)

So this can patch you DNA back together after it's been ripped to shreds?

Pardon me, but I'm a bit sceptical.

Re:72 hours after exposure? (2, Informative)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728975)

Most DNA damage isn't primary and physical, it's secondary and chemical. After all, a single quantum or particle of ionising radiation can only ionise one target. The secondary electrons it creates, and the secondary chemical species those create, do the damage.

Re:72 hours after exposure? (4, Informative)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729043)

After all, a single quantum or particle of ionising radiation can only ionise one target.

Err .. no. It can ionize targets as long as it has sufficient energy to do so. Never seen a cloud chamber?

The secondary electrons it creates, and the secondary chemical species those create, do the damage.

I doubt that any of those molecules (H2O2, mostly) survive for more than a few minutes before doing damage to something that may or may no be important.

Re:72 hours after exposure? (3, Interesting)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729277)

Yeah, that was a stupid thing to say, given I know fine that it generates secondary species all along its path. My main gist is that there's an easy mental image of ionising radiation striking a DNA molecule and damaging it, which isn't the correct mechanism at all. The correct thing to say is that it can only ionise the DNA if it encouters it, whereas the secondary species effectively give it a larger cross-section. Secondary species are exteremely important to DNA damage. Their lifetimes aren't particularly large but they're monumental compared to the time the original radiation spends in the body.

Re:72 hours after exposure? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729143)

So this can patch you DNA back together after it's been ripped to shreds?

Nope, but it can prevent that highly damaged cell from dying. Which is believable, unlike the zero side effect claims.

Re:72 hours after exposure? (1)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729437)

So this can patch you DNA back together after it's been ripped to shreds?

Nope, but it can prevent that highly damaged cell from dying. Which is believable, unlike the zero side effect claims.

OK, so some radiation-damanged cells are gonna survive. Cancer cells are cells with damaged nuclei that get kicked into high gear and don't die easily. Howbout I don't get irradiated in the first place so I don't have to deal with possible cancers a few years down the line after taking this drug?

Re:72 hours after exposure? (5, Insightful)

GargamelSpaceman (992546) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729409)

No. According to TFA, your DNA is still ripped to shreds, but the drug supresses your cells' suicide mechanism that having 'corrupted data' in the DNA activated. The suicide mechanism helps keep damaged cells from becoming cancerous cells. Instead they become dead cells. In the case of lethal radiation poisoning, this happens to too many cells. Now, your cells already do have mechanisms to repair DNA damage. If something seems out of place, they can often make the right guess as to how to patch things back together. There are corrupt hard drive repair utilities that do this too. But sometimes they make the wrong guess or can't repair the DNA to original condition. That's why you have the suicide mechanism. A cell that has been so severely damaged that the suicide mechanism is activated has an unacceptably high likelihood of being sufficiently damage that it won't be able to be repaired back to 'manufacturers specifications'.

Rather than take the chance that the repairs that get done will leave the cell cancerous, the cell is programmed to suicide. Another cell will take it's place. But in the case of fatal radiation poisoning, this happens to too many cells at once.

'Unacceptable risk' that a cell might turn cancerous might be a very low risk indeed, since cancer is fatal 'in the wild'. Most radiation damaged cells might very well be able to repair themselves perfectly if only they didn't suicide. Deactivating the suicide mechanism temporarily gives them time to repair themselves. Once repaired, they no longer want to suicide. However in the case where many cells were radiation damaged, this likely means some cells were repaired incorrectly and will now cause cancer. Maybe this is not as likely as it may seem at first? How well does radiation cause cancer? How exactly does it happen? I've heard that a speck of plutonium inhaled has a 100% chance of causing lung cancer. But that speck is emmitting radiation 24x7 killing and damaging neighboring cells all the time. Is it the nuclear damage to the cells that causes the cancer, or is it the constant healing? Doesn't the body send stem cells to repair damaged areas? Aren't stem cells more cancer prone?

Maybe in the case of radiation poisoning, the cells are damaged, and if prevented from suiciding, they will be fine. This isn't chronic radiation damage caused by contamination, but rather acute radiation poisoning caused by having rads of radiation shined through you.

Maybe not. Excessive X-Ray photographs cause cancer don't they? Maybe the irradiated mice and monkeys will be teeming with tumors in short order. Maybe some of them will touch their keepers and pick up some genetic material. Then they will mutate to be more humanlike, including having intelligence, and natural talent at karate. They will go live in the sewers and protect us from evil ninja gangs with their elite Kung Fu skillz.

Re:72 hours after exposure? (2, Insightful)

TheLink (130905) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729427)

Probably not.

More likely it just stops the damaged cells from committing suicide.

Any increase in cancer rates shouldn't be a big problem for mice, since most mice have a max lifespan of 2-3 years anyway.

That said, not all damaged cells would end up as cancer, or even nonmalignant tumours. They could just be different from normal in a nonlethal or "big problem" way.

So we can cure him? (1)

bytethese (1372715) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728935)

Someone get the Toxic Avenger on the phone...

That's silly (4, Funny)

Minwee (522556) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728945)

Why bother with miracle drugs when all you need to protect yourself from radiation is to duck underneath a flimsy wooden desk and cover your head with your hands?

Re:That's silly (5, Funny)

arndawg (1468629) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729135)

I was under the impression that fridgerators was the way to go.

Re:That's silly (1)

arndawg (1468629) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729495)

umm. i meant refrigerators ..

Oh good, (5, Insightful)

ChinggisK (1133009) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728949)

Now nuclear war won't be so bad.

Re:Oh good, (4, Insightful)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729419)

MAD only applied when the enemy was a State. When it's a bunch of Peace Loving Religious cultists bashing lumps of plutinium together on a boat in New York Harbor, then survivability becomes an issue.

Re:Oh good, (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729503)

You start advertising missiles pointed towards Mecca. There's still MAD.

Re:Oh good, (1)

TheHawke (237817) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729671)

That's one of the things with finding and deploying cures for the effects of a nuclear event. It might have the effect of removing the political aspect of using nuclear weapons, to actually encouraging terrorists to actually deploy IND or the Real Thing.

This would help people, but what would clean up the contamination of the surrounding environment aside from dozers and dump trucks?

Won't fix DNA damage (1)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728963)

This would be great in that it keeps you alive in the immediate future, but there's no way it could fix all the subtle DNA damage that could give you cancer later. Also, women have all the eggs they'll ever have, and any damage to them would be permanent.

Re:Won't fix DNA damage (1)

Blixinator (1585261) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729105)

At least you'll get the Rad Regeneration perk

Re:Won't fix DNA damage (3, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729215)

Essentially everyone, if they don't get have a heart attack, kiss a bus, or otherwise snuff it early, will eventually succumb to cancer. Assuming this stuff isn't extraordinarily expensive or incredibly nasty in some other way, "survival now, cancer later" would be a good deal for all but the oldest radiation exposure victims.

Just In Time For : (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28728977)

nuking Iran.

Why is Hilary Clinton upset with North Korea having nuclear weapons but is not upset with Israel having nuclear weapons?

Yours In Peace,
Kilgore Trout

Re:Just In Time For : (5, Insightful)

foniksonik (573572) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729393)

Why post anonymous troll... don't have any confidence in your assertions? Don't want to have your karma blasted?

North Korea is like an ugly step-child who will take every opportunity to get back at his more attractive more successful siblings. That kid nobody likes because they always lie about everything and don't take care of themselves, don't try to get along and are generally miserable and make everyone around them miserable.

Israel is like a self-centered only child who gets all the attention deserved or not and always expects that she gets to go first. The kids she cut in front of long ago despise her but everyone else just takes pity on her as an only child and invite her to their parties to be nice. Sometimes she helps out, if it's in her own interest and then everyone gives her a high five to encourage her to do more for others and be less self-centered...

Two completely different psychologies that can present themselves in similar ways at times... both are isolated in a way and feel threatened by those around them, so they both feel the need to create and put forward a strong defensive front and both over-react when anyone questions them about it. Otherwise, completely different.

Now let's get back on topic.

Does it depend on the Jew genes? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28728987)

I'm referring to the supposedly unique ones, advertised by the Israel eugenicists since the 60s, although there is little basis for them in reality.

Big Deal (-1, Offtopic)

wwest4 (183559) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728995)

I'm waiting for the cure to hibernation sickness. I froze my little brother in a trash can back in 1983. Before I let him out, I want to make sure he's not blind for two days just in case my mom decides to cast us into the Pit of Carkoon.

Suicidal cells (3, Interesting)

Antidamage (1506489) | more than 5 years ago | (#28728997)

"The medication works by suppressing the "suicide mechanism" of cells hit by radiation, while enabling them to recover from the radiation-induced damages that prompted them to activate the suicide mechanism in the first place."

So it turns the cell into a cry for attention?

Seriously though, saving cells damaged by radiation sounds like a shortcut to cancer. Is the claim of 'enabling cells to recover' realistic?

Re:Suicidal cells (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729543)

When the alternative is dying immediately, a surprising number of people are likely to choose cancer later.

I've watched close relatives suffer with and die of cancer, and if it meant I got to live a decade and die of cancer instead of dying this week, I'd take the stuff.

Re:Suicidal cells (1)

AndrewNeo (979708) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729647)

Some of the above comments state that the supression instead causes cell death, which then allows non-broken cells to properly replace them. The damaged cells will die, not recover.

Smoke 'em if you got 'em (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729001)

It would be really funny if the only way to get it into your system effectively would be through smoking the drug as in the movie "Screamers". A good sci-fi movie if you haven't seen it.

BG? (3, Interesting)

Cpt_Kirks (37296) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729037)

Is that the stuff Helo kept shooting up while he was stranded on Caprica?

it stops apoptosis (5, Informative)

aepervius (535155) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729081)

QUOTE : Researchers developed the drug after looking at how some resistant cancer cells are able to withstand radiotherapy.
It works by inhibiting the protein that initiates the cell suicide programme


In other word it does not repair radiation damage (cue the rad away joke), it just stops all the cells where this protein is present to die. Whether there was a good reason for them to die or not. It might be wonderful for radiation treatment, though. The researcher seems conscient of the risk (like new cancer developping).

Re:it stops apoptosis (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729197)

There's a certain risk involved in keeping cells from undergoing apoptosis due to how that damage could result in cancerous cells, but it could also mean that the cells have time to repair, or will undergo apoptosis more gradually as the drug wears off. (Thus damaged cells are still destroyed, but not in the sudden, rapid manner that causes deadly radiation sickness.) It's a promising development to be sure, even if it's not a perfect solution.

Re:it stops apoptosis (2, Interesting)

oneirophrenos (1500619) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729435)

Developing mutations that enable tumour cells to evade apoptosis is one of the crucial methods by which they achieve malignacy. If we introduce a drug that prevents a cell from committing suicide after irrevocable genetic damage, we significantly increase the odds of cancer. That drug is, effectively, a carcinogen. However, if the alternative is death from the stochastic effects of radiation exposure, maybe the drastic increasing in cancer probability is an acceptable downside.

Long-term radiation exposure (1)

Mr.Fork (633378) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729087)

Chemo is a SOB. But what is not clear is if it helps against sustained radiation exposure. If a 'bomb' did go off, and you were far enough from the gamma radiation effects, the long term radiation that is left over continually emits, how will this med work against that? Furthermore, if you take the med, does it mean you can live in an area where radiation continually emits or that you can survive brief exposures? Apart from the DNA breaking side-effects of radiation, what would this mean for those who are exposed to an area that is contaminated by radiation?

kdawson strikes again (0, Troll)

VShael (62735) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729179)

How did this story ever get on to Slashdot?

If I post a blog entry about discovering the cure for fat, will I get slashdotted?

Re:kdawson strikes again (2, Insightful)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729447)

Depends if kdawson's running another Snake Oil Happy Hour Special. So, likely yes.

Not kosher! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729181)

Made from bacon.

Cooked from the inside (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729241)

Exposures can involve dust, particulate matter, or the radioactive element itself. If you get these solids somehow lodged in you lungs etc. you're screwed. They sit there and decay and irradiate your innards until golden brown. Most of this was from a quantum class I took where the prof explained exposure to alpha/gamma/beta is certainly not good but its survivable - ingesting/breathing radioactive dust is very very bad.

Nothing in the article suggests a cancer cure. (2, Informative)

SecurityGuy (217807) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729273)

Perhaps that was just speculation on the part of the submitter.

Curing cancer entails the difficult process of getting all the people who have cancer today to not have it later (short of dying). A radioprotectant will not make cancer go away. It also won't prevent new cancers, since radiation is not the only cause.

Re:Nothing in the article suggests a cancer cure. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729291)

i think the submitters cancer reference was more about protection from radiation therapy and not actually curing cancer.

cell suicide is done (0, Redundant)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729275)

for many reasons, but a not unimportant reason is to protect the rest of the organism from the cell possibly becoming cancerous (tiny chance, but stacks up with enough radiation exposure to enough cells)

so if cell suicide is prevented, expect an increase in various cancer rates weeks or months after initial radiation exposure

Re:cell suicide is done (0, Redundant)

omnichad (1198475) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729533)

Considering imminent death was the only alternative, I think that most people could live with that.

I have a feeling... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729315)

...this'll be the key to *REAL* zombies.

Another success for VaulTec! (2, Funny)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729321)

With Rad-Away ready for store shelves, Stimpacks, BuffOut and Jet are on the way to phase 3 trials.

Re:Another success for VaulTec! (1)

Markvs (17298) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729539)

Just remember that Old Doc Bob had it in Needles first!

awesome! (2, Funny)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729351)

Now i'll be able to get bitten by as many radioactive spiders with no worries!

Homepage and older info (1)

yogibaer (757010) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729355)

They have a homepage with a bio of Dr. Gudkov (look under "Board of Directors" http://www.cbiolabs.com/ [cbiolabs.com] and they obviously have been working on this for some time and are now in clinical trials: 2007: http://www.redorbit.com/news/health/811854/cleveland_biolabs_chief_scientist_andrei_gudkov_discusses_recent_stem_cell/index.html [redorbit.com]

Hulk? (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729359)

So this potion will allow me to survive long enough to gain super powers?

650 + monkeys ? (2, Insightful)

PrinceAshitaka (562972) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729379)

I would doubt it. This would be far beyond what would be nessesary for statistically significant data and monkeys are expensive. If teh report got one detail wrong, what else is wrong with what was reported. I doubt they would even do 600+ mice or rats. That is just too high a number. I have my doubts about this report.

Re:650 + monkeys ? (1)

PrinceAshitaka (562972) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729439)

... and further more, 1-2 years to go from, what seem to be, phase 1 trials to the market in America; yea right!

Fallout, here we come. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729389)

Sounds a lot like Rad-X.

Sounds like a familiar situation in the past... (2, Informative)

shacky003 (1595307) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729429)

Anyone remember the disgraced "scientist" that claimed cloned babies, etc?
Maybe this only smells fishy because there's carp all over the damn place..

Another Use... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729475)

For the procrastinator in all of us. From the makers of Radaway, comes Another 10.

For far to many of us, we are not as organized as we shoud be during our final days, and if we simply had just a few more minutes we could get that last thing done, that last goodbye said, that last trigger pulled.

Now you can with, Another 10. Stopping cell death, Another 10 will get you that one last chance at piece of mind.

Side effects have not been tested for.

Hyronalin (2, Informative)

jameskojiro (705701) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729561)

Looks like they may have discovered Hyronalin
.
http://memory-alpha.org/en/wiki/Hyronalin [memory-alpha.org]
.
Wake me up when they have discovered Warp Drive.

Fallout (3, Insightful)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 5 years ago | (#28729599)

Oh, *please* call it RadAway.

Newbs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729605)

It already exists... It's called Rad-X... god.

Now I must return to the vault.

Poor Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28729639)

The way the summary reads makes it sound like we are almost prepared for when the cylons take over.

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