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Skin cancer: Half of people surviving advanced melanoma 皮肤癌:黑色素瘤晚期存活率过半

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英国医生们说,十年前皮肤癌被认为是不治之症,但现在,超过半数的患者都可以活下来。

There has been a staggering transformation in the treatment of melanoma. Ten years ago the disease was considered untreatable once it had spread round the body. People with advanced melanoma lived for between six and nine months. Now half are alive five years later.

恶性黑色素瘤的治疗发生了惊人的转变。十年前,这种疾病一旦扩散到全身就被看作是不治之症,黑色素瘤晚期患者的存活时间为六到九个月。现在,有一半人在五年后还活着。

Our immune system constantly patrols our body fighting off hostile invaders such as viruses. It should attack cancers too, but they can learn ways of hiding. The two drugs used in this trial - ipilimumab and nivolumab - both stop some cancers hiding and allow the immune system to attack. This is not one of those health stories where we say patients might benefit in a decade's time - this is saving lives today.

我们的免疫系统总是在全身各处巡查,击退病毒等不友好的入侵者。它本应攻击体内的各种癌细胞,但后者能变换花样地隐藏起来。试验中使用的两种药物易普利姆玛(ipilimumab)与纳武利尤单抗(nivolumab)都能阻止一些癌症的隐藏,从而让免疫系统得以出击。这不是那种我们说病人可能在十年后受益的健康故事,而是在此时此刻就在拯救生命的故事。

Immunotherapy is Nobel prize-winning science that is now a key pillar of cancer treatment alongside chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery. It does not cure every patient but it is making the untreatable treatable.

免疫疗法是获得诺贝尔奖的科学,现在是治疗癌症的一个关键支柱,与化学疗法、放射治疗和手术并列。它虽不能治愈每一位患者,但它让不治之症变得可以治愈。

词汇

staggering 惊人的

untreatable 无法医治的

advanced (疾病)晚期的

immune system 免疫系统

patrols 巡查,巡逻

hostile invaders 不友好的入侵者

viruses 病毒

benefit 获益

immunotherapy 免疫疗法

pillar 支柱、基石

chemotherapy 化学疗法

radiotherapy 放射治疗

surgery 手术

阅读理解:请在读完上文后,回答下列问题 。

1. What were the chances of survival for people with melanoma ten years ago?

2. Why is our immune system sometimes unable to fight off 'hostile invaders'?

3. True or false? This new immunotherapy treatment means that everyone with melanoma can now be cured.

4. How long will it take before patients benefit from this new treatment?

答案

1. What were the chances of survival for people with melanoma ten years ago?

The chances of survival were not very good. Ten years ago the disease was considered untreatable once it had spread round the body. People with advanced melanoma lived for between six and nine months.

2. Why is our immune system sometimes unable to fight off 'hostile invaders'?

Our immune system should attack cancers but they can learn ways of hiding.

3. True or false? This new immunotherapy treatment means that everyone with melanoma can now be cured.

False. It does not cure every patient but it is making the untreatable treatable.

4. How long will it take before patients benefit from this new treatment?

Not long at all. The reporter says "this is saving lives today".

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