Navigation Links
Mayo Clinic Researchers Create 'Obedient Virus'; First Step To Use Measles Virus Against Cancer

An international team of Mayo Clinic-led researchers is first to devise a system that consistently converts the measles virus into a therapeutic killer that hunts down and destroys cancer cells -- and cancer cells only. Their research findings appear as an advanced electronic article of Nature Biotechnology.

The researchers harnessed the viral trait for attacking and commandeering cells, and then redirected the virus to attack diseased, rather than healthy cells. The work was done on laboratory animals implanted with two kinds of human cancer cells -- ovarian cancer and lymphoma -- and is probably still years away from use as a human therapy. But the concept has at last been proved in mice with human cancer tumors -- and that's an essential step toward using this approach to expand and improve human treatments for a variety of cancers.

The "Obedient Virus"

"When I saw the data, I was completely stunned. It's the sort of thing that, having worked on targeting viruses for about 15 years, I just couldn't believe that we'd finally got what we'd been hunting all that time," says Stephen Russell, M.D., Ph.D., lead researcher and director of Mayo Clinic's Molecular Medicine Program.

"It's very clean, very clear targeting. Our results show that we've efficiently ablated (destroyed) the ability of the measles virus to interact with its two natural receptors. And they also show that we can take our pick as to what new receptor we target and send the virus after it."

How They Did It

Using bioengineering techniques, the team reprogrammed the measles virus to seek a cancer cell to bind to instead of its natural binding partner. Then they invented a "molecular tag" that they attached to structures on the outside of the cancer-seeking measles virus. This tag is the key innovation of their work and central to the success of the team's investigation. It enables researchers to grow retargeted measles virus on special "universal substrate cells" -- while at the same time conserving the viral component for targeting and destroying tumors. Mass production of a retargeted virus was not possible before this specific innovation of the molecular tag -- and research in this area was at an impasse. Not any more.

"The virus goes where it's meant to go, and it destroys the tumors in a targeted way," says Dr. Russell.

Background Biology

Natural viruses are cellular parasites. To reproduce more viruses, they need to bind to a partner on their target cell, fuse membranes to enter the target cell and then take over the cellular machinery. When they succeed in doing this, an infection occurs. Viruses are so good at taking over cells that researchers have long dreamed of exploiting the specific attraction viruses have to certain cells and using it as a homing device to seek and enter cancer cells.

The measles virus became the focus of this vision several years ago when the surprising finding was made that the measles strain used internationally for vaccinations has natural anticancer activity.

"But we had a concern that the measles virus may be a little too promiscuous in its ability to infect both cancer cells and non-cancer cells, so we wanted to develop a method whereby we could retarget the virus to infect cancer cells only," says Dr. Russell. "And we succeeded."


'"/>

Source:Mayo Clinic


Related biology news :

1. Chronic Sinus Infection Thought To Be Tissue Issue, Mayo Clinic Scientists Show Its Snot
2. Clinical trial to test stem cell approach for children with brain injury
3. Mayo Clinic collaboration discovers protein amplifies DNA injury signals
4. Mayo Clinic researchers challenge sepsis theory
5. Mayo Clinic researchers discover cancer cells may move via wave stimulation
6. Mayo Clinic study finds two genes predict outcome for breast cancer patients
7. Mayo Clinic Cancer Center: Harnessing the measles virus to attack cancer
8. Mayo Clinic collaboration mining of ancient herbal text leads to potential new anti-bacterial drug
9. Mayo Clinic study suggests that a central nervous system viral infection can lead to memory deficits
10. Mayo Clinic: Gene expression profiling not quite perfected in predicting lung cancer prognosis
11. Researchers discover way to make cells in the eye sensitive to light
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:6/2/2016)... 2016   The Weather Company , an IBM Business ... industry-first capability in which consumers will be able to interact ... questions via voice or text and receive relevant information about ... Marketers have long sought an advertising solution that can ... personal, relevant and valuable; and can scale across millions of ...
(Date:5/16/2016)... , May 16, 2016   EyeLock LLC , ... announced the opening of an IoT Center of Excellence ... and expand the development of embedded iris biometric applications. ... level of convenience and security with unmatched biometric accuracy, ... identity aside from DNA. EyeLock,s platform uses video technology ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... First quarter 2016:   , ... the first quarter of 2015 The gross margin was ... 18.8) and the operating margin was 40% (-13) Earnings ... flow from operations was SEK 249.9 M (21.2) , ... SEK 7,000-8,500 M. The operating margin for 2016 is ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... UAS LifeSciences, ... launch of their brand, UP4™ Probiotics, into Target stores nationwide. The company, which ... to add Target to its list of well-respected retailers. This list includes such ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. ... test has received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI ... stated Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... , ... STACS DNA Inc., the sample tracking software company, today announced that ... joined STACS DNA as a Field Application Specialist. , “I am thrilled that ... of STACS DNA. “In further expanding our capacity as a scientific integrator, Hays brings ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 On ... session at 4,833.32, down 0.22%; the Dow Jones Industrial Average ... 500 closed at 2,085.45, down 0.17%. Stock-Callers.com has initiated coverage ... INFI ), Nektar Therapeutics (NASDAQ: NKTR ), Aralez ... Inc. (NASDAQ: BIND ). Learn more about these ...
Breaking Biology Technology: