Jamaican scientist lands blow in cancer fight
Dr Lawrence Williams, a research scientist at the Scientific Research Council (SRC), has been awarded an international patent on a compound isolated from the Guinea Hen Weed as a protein complex of dibenzyl trisulphide.
The SRC said the protein complex has the ability to kill a wide range of cancers.
The Jamaican's discovery has the potential to fight various kinds of cancers, a few of which are: melanoma, lung cancer and breast cancer. The molecule also has implications for the treatment of ageing diseases.
The SRC noted that, with more than 13 years dedicated to this research, Williams has revealed that the complex is superior in killing cancer cells relative to the pure compound found in the Guinea Hen Weed-dibenzyl trisulphide.
"This remarkable breakthrough comes at a time when the world is crippled by the effects of cancer, as it is one of the leading killers globally," the SRC asserted.
The SRC said it joined the remainder of the international medical fraternity in celebrating the scientific breakthrough.
"This is good news for Jamaica, given its ability to contribute to health, longevity and as a major foreign exchange earner. Williams' discovery could change the face of medicine as we now know it," the SRC declared.
Williams said that the next stage is conducting clinical trials of the compound and the development of a pharmaceutical agent.
The SRC, one of Jamaica's chief proponents of scientific research and development, commended its team member on his "outstanding contribution to science".
Rights to the patent are shared with Dr George Levy, a Jamaica-born medical doctor living in the United States.http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20101202/lead/lead4.html