Could gold help fight cancer?

Could Gold Help Fight Cancer?
Could Gold Help Fight Cancer?

A possible breakthrough in cancer research that's as good as gold.

Several scientists are testing gold to diagnose and treat cancer. But you won't be seeing stacks of gold bars in your doctor's office.

They're using incredibly small particles - about 4 million times smaller than a hair's width.

Professor Dror Fixler, a physicist and Rabbi in Israel, is using a special mixture to find cancer in patients' throat and mouth.

He's created a sort of mouthwash that patients gargle for several minutes that essentially paints the cancer cells and makes them detectable under a scanner.

The doctor says the method hasn't been approved yet, but it's already shown a success rate of more than 90 percent.

And the BBC reports other scientists are using tiny gold spheres coated with a chemotherapy drug and inserting them into brain tumors cells. In several cases the cancer stopped growing and many diseased cells even died after some time. Human trials for that method likely won't begin until 2016.

It's still unclear what specifically might be making the gold method so successful, but one theory suggests light reflection aimed at body tissue could help reveal tumors.

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