SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Cancer has no respect for race, gender, or religion. Most of us have lost a loved one to cancer or know someone who is undergoing treatment for cancer right now — maybe even you!
But what if I told you — we may be one year out from eliminating cancer in humans. It’s already proven in laboratory mice.
In March, KSLA sat down with Dr. Hadiyah-Nicole Green who is at the helm of this cancer revolution.
Dr. Green is behind the laser technology. She was motivated after she says cancer picked a fight with the wrong family — cancer took the only parents Dr. Green ever knew.
To her it’s not about statistics, it’s personal.
“When I was a little girl I use to say why me? My biological mom passed when I was 18 months. I didn’t know my father."
My grandparents took us in and they both passed in the same year when I was 4.”
Dr. Green’s aunt and uncle took her and her brothers in. Her aunt was later diagnosed with cancer but refused the chemo or radiation because of the harsh side effects.
Just three months later, her uncle, the man who raised her was diagnosed with cancer.
“I watched what chemo and radiation did to my uncle who raised me. And I saw him use 150 pounds, all of his hair, eyelashes, eyebrows."
Dr. Green attended Alabama A & M University on a full academic scholarship and graduated with a 4.0 GPA in physics. She is one of the first African American women to earn a Ph.D in Physics.
Dr. Green said she was actually planning to use her background in lasers and optics to revolutionize the way we receive cable and the internet. But when cancer came to her family’s doorsteps, it rocked her and she started fighting back with her knowledge using her laser and optics background to fight cancer in mice.
She invented the laser-activated nanotherapy, completely eliminating tumors in laboratory mice in 15 days after a single 10-minute treatment and without any observable side effects.
Dr. Green said her team of collaborators — surgeons and oncologists — are ready to begin human trials in a variety of different cancer types including breast, prostate, colorectal, anal, cervical, pancreatic, head and neck, and skin cancers.
Dr. Green believes the same technology will work in humans, but she must raise $10 million dollars to begin human trials. She has raised $1.7 million so far through grassroots efforts.
“That is the most heartbreaking part of what I have the technology is sitting on the shelf while I fundraise and I have thousands and thousands of cancer patients say, ‘Can you do to me what you did that mouse. I’ll be your guinea pig, please try it on me.’"
She says many patients are desperate after they have been sent home and told there is nothing doctors and medical staff can do.
Dr. Green says her treatment is not for sale.
“I have colleagues who have developed different types of technologies and they sold it to a company, a larger company and instead of that company releasing it they just put it on the shelf so they wouldn’t have that competition.”
Her mission is to keep the treatment affordable and accessible to the 14.1 millon people who are diagnosed with cancer each year.
Ultimately, she says she knows her fight won’t bring her family members back — but she says her fight can save the family of others.
In order to start human trials, Dr. Green must raise $10 million. She also uses all of the proceeds from her national speaking engagements to help fund the Ora Lee Smith Cancer Research Foundation.