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Scientists Develop a Harmless Multi-Tasking Reovirus

activation of dendritic cells, which are key to early detection of infection (through the innate immune response), may "instruct" cells belonging to the adaptive immune response, namely natural killer cells and T cells, to attack the tumor even after the virus no longer remains in the body. That poster was presented at the European National Societies of Immunology Meeting in Paris.

Interestingly, another study conducted in 2006 at the Mayo Clinic suggested that momentarily suppressing the immune system allows the virus to continue replicating, leading to increased cancer cell killing. This in turn leads to the creation of more tumor antigens (the elements that educate the immune system), thereby increasing the vaccinating effect of the virus and perhaps improving the efficacy of oncolytic virus therapy.

"The apparent dual mechanism of action for oncolytic viruses will need to be tested further, both in patients and in the laboratory. If the effects turn out to be genuine, the implications for long-term survival from many types of cancer could be significant," says Coffey.

Researchers believe that therapies working simultaneously, but through different mechanisms, may overcome the resistance to treatment that is typically seen in cancer. In addition, this double attack on cancer could point to new treatment regimens based on conventional therapies like radiation and chemotherapy with biological agents.

Source-Eurekalert
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