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Research shows virus targets tumours September 1, 2011

Posted by Dreamhealer in Cancer, Research.
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A cancer-fighting virus can be delivered intravenously and appears to target solid tumours without harming the healthy tissue that’s nearby, researchers say.

A preliminary trial involving 23 patients with advanced cancers who were given infusions of the JX-594 virus was designed in part to establish safe dosages and see if the viral therapy would indeed reach the tumours.

The researchers in Ottawa, the United States and South Korea were encouraged by their findings, published this week in the journal Nature.

“No one’s ever been able to show before that they could deliver (virus) intravenously and see tumour targeting, so other people have tried… and were unsuccessful,” co-author Dr. John Bell of the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute said.

“This is the first time we’ve been able to show we can give the virus intravenously, it definitely gets to the tumour sites, it spreads throughout them quite nicely and begins to destroy the tumour. That really is the first.”

The scientists increased the dosage — for a total of five levels — with successive patients. Seven of the eight patients in the two highest dose groups had evidence of viral replication in their tumour but not in the normal tissue, the study found, and six of the eight patients had a shrinking or stabilization of their tumours.

The most common side-effect was mild to moderate flu-like symptoms that lasted less than a day, Bell said, adding the side-effects of other kinds of cancer treatment such as chemotherapy and radiation can be “quite difficult.” Read Full Article….

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