Innovative technique uses modified herpes virus to treat cancer
An innovative treatment could become hope for patients with advanced cancer. Scientists at the Institute of Cancer Research, linked to the University of London, in the United Kingdom, have discovered that a genetically modified form of the herpes virus is capable of reducing or ending tumors in terminally ill patients.
The study was presented at the Congress of the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO). In it, the researchers explain that the weakened herpes simplex virus, called RP2, was injected directly into the tumor of 39 patients diagnosed with skin, esophageal or head and neck cancer.
The virus managed to attack the tumor in two ways: by invading the cells and multiplying, causing them to explode from the inside; and stimulating patients’ immune systems, increasing their ability to kill cancer cells.
A third of the volunteers had their cancer growth stopped or slowed after treatment. A salivary gland cancer patient saw the tumor disappear completely and remained cancer-free for 15 months after starting treatment.
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According to the National Cancer Institute, for each year of the triennium 2020/2022, about 625 thousand cases of the disease will be recorded in Brazil.Science Photo Library – STEVE GSCHMEISSNER, Getty Images
Extremely common in the country, skin cancer is characterized by the appearance of tumors on the skin in the form of spots or spots with irregular shapes. Related to prolonged exposure to the sun, exposure to artificial tanning cameras or for hereditary reasons, the disease can be treated through surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy.miriam-doerr/istock
Breast cancer is caused by the uncontrolled multiplication of cells in the breast. Although common in women, the disease can also affect men. Among the symptoms of the disease are: pain in the breast region, hardened lump, redness, swelling and bloody secretion. Treatment involves surgery to remove the breast, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and hormone therapy.SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty Images
More common in men, prostate cancer has the following symptoms: blood in the urine, difficulty urinating, the need to urinate several times a day and the delay in starting and finishing urinating. Surgery and radiation therapy are among the treatments for the disease.Getty Images
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Although it may be related to hyperthyroidism, smoking, changes in sex hormones and diabetes, for example, thyroid cancer is still not well understood by experts. Despite this, treatments against the disease involve hormone therapy, radiotherapy, radioactive iodine and chemotherapy, depending on the case. getty images
Lung cancer is one of the types with the highest incidence in Brazil. Related to the use or prolonged exposure to smoking, its main symptoms are shortness of breath, chest pain, recurrent pneumonia, bronchitis, bloody sputum and frequent coughing. The disease is treated with chemotherapy, radiotherapy or/and surgeryBSIP / getty images
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In Brazil, squamous squamous cell carcinoma has the highest incidence among stomach cancers. Treatments involve surgery or radiation and chemotherapyiStock
Stomach cancer is diagnosed after identifying malignant tumors spread throughout the organ that can appear as ulcers. Related to infections caused by Helicobacter Pylori, by the presence of ulcers and untreated chronic gastritis, for example, the disease can cause vomiting with blood or blood in the stool, frequent belly pain and constant heartburnSmith Collection/Gado/Getty Images
Cervical cancer has symptoms of intermittent vaginal bleeding, abdominal pain related to bowel or urinary complaints, and abnormal vaginal discharge. Treatment involves chemotherapy, radiation and surgery.Science Photo Library/GettyImages
Oral cancer is a disease that involves the presence of malignant tumors on the lips, gums, roof of the mouth, tongue, cheeks and bones. It is more common in men over 40 years old and has as symptoms oral cavity sores, tongue stains and neck nodules, for example. Treatment involves surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy.pexels
Seven of the 30 patients who received the drug and immunotherapy with nivolumab also improved at the end of the trials. Six of them had no disease progression at 14 months.
“Viruses are one of humanity’s oldest enemies, as we have all seen during the pandemic. But our new research suggests that we can exploit some of the features that make them challenging adversaries to infect and kill cancer cells,” Professor Kristian Helin, chief executive of the Cancer Research Institute, said in a statement.