14 January 2011

Virus Might Fight Brain Tumors Better If Armed With Bacterial Enzyme, Study Shows

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New research shows that oncolytic viruses, which are engineered to destroy cancer cells, might be more effective in treating deadly brain tumors if equipped with an enzyme that helps them penetrate the tumor

The enzyme, called chondroitinase, helps the cancer-killing virus clear its way through the thickets of protein molecules that fill space between cells and impede the virus's movement through the tumor, say researchers at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center-Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute who conducted the study.

When tested in animals transplanted with a human glioblastoma, the most common and deadly form of brain cancer, the enzyme-armed virus improved survival by 52 percent compared with controls and in some cases eliminated the tumor entirely.

The findings were published online in the journal Clinical Cancer Research.

(ScienceDaily)

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