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Lloyd Old Dies

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Cancer researcher Lloyd Old, who pioneered the field of cancer immunotherapy, died this week from prostate cancer, reports The New York Times. He was 78. He held a number of posts in his lifetime, including at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research. Old studied the links between cancer and the immune system, and made it possible for others to develop cancer-fighting vaccines, the Times says. Old and his Sloan-Kettering colleague Edward Boyce were the first to discover cell-surface markers on cancer cells, leading to the conclusion that the immune system could be used to fight cancer. "It was considered unconventional — bordering on fringe — when Dr. Old began his work in the 1960s, but it is now a popular field and is listed on the Web site of the American Cancer Society as one of the standard options for cancer treatment, along with surgery, radiation and chemotherapy," the Times adds.

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