Cell carriers for oncolytic viruses: current challenges and future directions
Dominic G Roy,1,2 John C Bell1–3
1Centre for Innovative Cancer Therapeutics, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, 2Department of Biochemistry, Immunology and Microbiology, 3Department of Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, Canada
Abstract: The optimal route for clinical delivery of oncolytic viruses is thought to be systemic intravenous injection; however, the immune system is armed with several highly efficient mechanisms to remove pathogens from the circulatory system. To overcome the challenges faced in trying to delivery oncolytic viruses specifically to tumors via the bloodstream, carrier cells have been investigated to determine their suitability as delivery vehicles for systemic administration of oncolytic viruses. Cell carriers protect viruses from neutralization, one of the most limiting aspects of oncolytic virus interaction with the immune system. Cell carriers can also possess inherent tumor tropism, thus directing the delivery of the virus more specifically to a tumor. With preclinical studies already demonstrating the success and feasibility of this approach with multiple oncolytic viruses, clinical evaluation of cell-mediated delivery of viruses is on the horizon. Meanwhile, ongoing preclinical studies are aimed at identifying new cellular vehicles for oncolytic viruses and improving current promising cell carrier platforms.
Keywords: oncolytic virus, cell carrier, systemic delivery, tumor targeting, cancer
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