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New frontiers in oncolytic viruses: optimizing and selecting for virus strains with improved efficacy

Authors Lundstrom K

Received 20 September 2017

Accepted for publication 17 November 2017

Published 9 February 2018 Volume 2018:12 Pages 43—60


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Dr Doris Benbrook

Kenneth Lundstrom

PanTherapeutics, Lutry, Switzerland

Oncolytic viruses have demonstrated selective replication and killing of tumor cells. Different types of oncolytic viruses – adenoviruses, alphaviruses, herpes simplex viruses, Newcastle disease viruses, rhabdoviruses, Coxsackie viruses, and vaccinia viruses – have been applied as either naturally occurring or engineered vectors. Numerous studies in animal-tumor models have demonstrated substantial tumor regression and prolonged survival rates. Moreover, clinical trials have confirmed good safety profiles and therapeutic efficacy for oncolytic viruses. Most encouragingly, the first cancer gene-therapy drug – Gendicine, based on oncolytic adenovirus type 5 – was approved in China. Likewise, a second-generation oncolytic herpes simplex virus-based drug for the treatment of melanoma has been registered in the US and Europe as talimogene laherparepvec.

Keywords: immunotherapy, viral vectors, clinical trials, drug approval

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