Viruses used to kill cancer cells

Tom James @ 22-05-2009

tamedviruswiA fascinating concept: researchers at the University of Oxford have developed a method that uses modified viruses to destroy cancerous cells, whilst leaving healthy cells intact:

The research team modified a common virus – called an adenovirus – so that it could deliver genetic therapy to destroy tumours without poisoning the liver.

The changes enabled the virus to keeps its natural ‘infectious’ characteristics to replicate in, and kill, cancer cells in mice.

But for the first time the virus is also recognised and destroyed by healthy mouse liver cells, so it is no longer toxic.

Poachers make the best gamekeepers, no?

[from Physorg][image from Physorg]

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6 Responses to “Viruses used to kill cancer cells”

  1. TomMarcinko says:

    Fascinating post, and your last line strikes this estadounidense as a peculiarly British way of phrasing it. : )

  2. Screen Sleuth says:

    This is the way diseases will be fought in the future, instead of the usage of the nasty chemotherapy method.

  3. Insinly says:

    Hi, discriminative posts there 🙂 thank’s for the interesting advice

  4. Sarah Ennals says:

    Minor nitpick – shouldn’t that be “is recognized and destroyed by white blood cells”? I’m no biologist, so maybe healthy liver cells can defend themselves too, it just looked a bit weird to me.

  5. hej says:

    shouldn’t that be “is recognized and destroyed by white blood cells”?

    I thought so too at first. But it looks as though what they did was to change the virus so that it becomes harmless inside all liver cells.

  6. robb says:

    this is good news, yes ?
    let’s hope it can be widely applied asap.