Dr. Belanger has a three-step approach when working with a person with hepatocellular carcinoma.
Step one: He frequently orders a test that determines what drugs and natural medicines are best at inducing cell death of the hepatocellular cancer cells found in a person’s blood. He works with a lab called RGCC in Greece. This lab isolates circulating hepatocellular cancer cells from the bloodstream and tests over fifty natural substances and over fifty drugs to determine which have the greatest ability to induce cancer cell death. Dr. Belanger will use this information to construct a plan which will include recommending the best drug regimen on the RGCC test and adding nutritional supplements which may improve the ability of the selected drug to induce hepatocellular cancer cell death while reducing the drugs toxicity on healthy cells. In addition, he will use the RGCC test to select two or three nutritional supplements which came up the highest at inducing hepatocellular cancer cell cancer cell death.
Step two: He orders over five panels at a variety of labs to assess imbalances in the patient’s immune system. In order for cancer to grow and create symptoms and/or appear on a scan, it needs to escape a person’s immune system. Dr. Belanger does extensive tests to determine how and why the hepatocellular cancer cells were not destroyed by a patient’s immune system and he uses this information to select nutritional supplements that correct these imbalances. To determine if these imbalances have been eliminated, he retests the abnormal immune labs to make sure they have been restored to normal. This helps him determine that the patient’s immune cells are now capable of destroying hepatocellular cancer cells in the future. This may also improve the effectiveness of single target immunotherapies such as nivolumab because more immune system parameters in addition to PDL1 have been assessed and addressed.
Step three: Dr. Belanger orders a third panel of lab tests from over three separate laboratories to determine what is stimulating the growth and potential spread of the hepatocellular cancer cells. In order for a tumor to grow beyond a few millimeters it needs an adequate blood supply to provide it with a constant supply of nutrients and oxygen. There are numerous blood vessel stimulators besides VEGF that are commonly produced by hepatocellular cancer cells that can be detected in the blood such as TGF and MMP-9. Dr. Belanger measures over ten of these growth factors and prepares a customized blend of nutritional supplements to decrease their levels. After about one month, he remeasures any growth factor that was elevated to help ensure that the cancer is being “starved” and not able to build anymore new blood vessels. This can help reduce the resistance to drugs like lenvatinib and bevacizumab.