Combine psychotherapy and conventional medical management: Kalam

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Coimbatore, May 1 (UNI) Former President A P J Abdul Kalam today stressed the need to combine psychotherapy and conventional medical management for cancer, to address the complex problems of mind and body.

Inaugurating the golden jubilee block of Valavadi Narayanswamy Cancer Centre here, he said the Bangalore Cancer Research Foundation conducted a unique multi-institutional study with DRDO, DIPR, DIPAS and CCMB to establish the relationship of stress of breast cancer patients.

The perceived stress of the patients would be influenced by the social support provided by the caretakers, he added.

He said standard psychological methods were used to quantify the stress of the patients like their coping strategies, blood cortisol and cell mediated immunity.

Kalam said the study revealed specific correlation of the stress of the patients with the immune responses and patients who had received adequate social support had lower level of perceived stress. Due to the inadequate emotional support from the spouses and caretakers their prognosis to surgical, radiation and chemotherapy were better than those who had higher level of perceived stress, he added.

Speaking about the stem cell research, he said two teams of researchers, one in Japan and the other in US, have succeeded in developing a simple method of producing stem cell from human skin, which could be carried out at most fully equipped research labs.

Using re-activated viruses, the scientists managed to transport four key genes in the nucleus of the skin cells, which later re-programmed themselves into cells virtually identical to embryonic stem cells.

Mr Kalam said the embryo starts out as a mass of undifferentiated cells, which then divide, multiply and go down different paths to take the shape of various tissues and organs of the body. The mechanisms which constitute this orderly process of differentiation is fast getting understood at the laboratory level.


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