Oncolytic viruses infect tumour cells, where they can either kill the cell directly or act as a flag to the immune system.
There are currently no oncolytic viruses approved for treating brain tumours within the NHS, but research is ongoing.
Find out more about clinical trials here.
What is an oncolytic virus?
Viruses can infect and kill cells. Some naturally occurring viruses, as well as viruses that have been altered in the lab, infect and kill cancer cells. These are known as oncolytic viruses.
Along with killing the cells directly, the viruses can also alert the immune system to attack the cancer cells.
Dynamite for Cancer Cells
A virus to cure cancer? It’s possible! Some viruses can infect cancer cells specifically, and cause them to burst. These are known as oncolytic viruses. Watch the video for more information about this.
Read more about immunotherapies for brain tumours here.
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