Update – July 12, 2019
Wow! It’s been over two months since I last posted and so much has happened! I’ll stick to brief bullet points for this update, but please use the reply feature to ask any questions or request additional info on anything I might mention here.
I’m really pleased to be able to report that my health continues to be excellent! I feel great and have no symptoms of disease. My blood numbers – while not fully “normal” — seem no great cause for concern. Currently, I am NOT receiving any regular, on-going allopathic treatment. I suspended my use of Pembrolizumab because of the colitis it caused me, and I’m currently tapering the Prednisone I have been taking in response. While I am continuing with my non-allopathic treatments – including naturopathic supplements, a dietary strategy, acupuncture, daily meditation and sound therapy, etc. — overall, I have truly returned to something close to the “normal” that preceded my diagnosis. It feels as if I can trust the divine protection that has obviously been operating in my case – and that I may have gotten beyond this as a life-threatening illness. Praise be to God!
Part of why I’m so pleased is that I had surgery on June 5th to repair an inguinal hernia that had been bothering me (and getting larger) since before my diagnosis. The surgery went very well, and I seem to be fully recovered with no complaints! That’s a major milestone… and holds out the promise that I will also be able to get my arthritic hip replaced before too much longer. Restoring pain-free walking would be huge for my ability to exercise.
Another reason for optimism on the health front is the plethora of options opening up before me should I need to respond to a cancer resurgence. The neoantigen vaccine can be repeated if need be… and the same neoantigen production and testing approach we used for my vaccine would also be the basis for personalized TIL therapy. These are really powerful options that have now become part of my realizable treatment future because I took control of my genomic data. The confidence that provides both me and my family is hugely reassuring and worthwhile just in itself. Hopefully, I’ll have no need to repeat the vaccine design, testing and production process – or move to TIL therapy – but boy, it is nonetheless very reassuring to know that I can if I need to… Now the job is to make the turnaround time as quick and convenient as possible.
Toward that end, progress continues with MyCancerDB – the cloud-based SaaS company we decided to launch to help late stage cancer patients identify and access their best available treatment options and better monitor their disease progression and response to treatment. Conquer Magazine just published (June 2019 edition) an article I wrote explaining the need for the company, https://conquer-magazine.com/issues/2019/vol-5-no-3-june-2019/993-why-patients-with-cancer-need-to-gain-control-over-their-fundamental-health-data and more publicity is likely to follow as we seek to make ourselves known to the cancer patient community, and hopefully attract a few more folks interested in becoming founding members (we currently have four and we’d like to end up with no more than ten). We are only just now starting to meet with prospective outside investors. Please feel free to share the Conquer Magazine article with anyone you know who might be interested.
AI-enabled Data Ecosystem Sprint
Presidential Innovation Fellow and Harvard Medical School professor, Dr. Gil Alterovitz also invited MyCancerDB to apply to lead a team in a twelve-week “AI-enabled Data Ecosystem Sprint” innovation competition to design and build a data-driven AI software application to benefit cancer patients. We have proposed creating direct patient access to a novel production supply chain for personalized neoantigen cancer vaccines. In other words, we envision the ability of a patient (from within their instance of MyCancerDB) to bang on a button and launch the production of their own, unique, personalized neoantigen cancer vaccine! Our goal is that after banging on the button, two months later their oncologist would receive their vaccine in the mail ready for injection! If we are successful at this, I think it could be life-saving for many thousands of people. More to follow…
One of the tasks we face in launching the company is organizing a Board of Advisors willing to help us – and we are making great progress toward that end. We’re looking to build a 12 person board, and we’ve now received 6 acceptances… including Dr. Kelley Turner, the NY Times bestselling author of “Radical Remission”…. I’m really thrilled!!!
That’s all for now, but more to follow (and hopefully more frequently) in the near future! Keep those prayers coming!!! Remember, Love is the real healer!!!