Scientists find ally in the fight against brain tumors, Glioblastoma is cruel, difficult to treat, and often fatal brain tumors.
Now Yale scientists are the most unlikely allies in the treatment of this form of Ebola cancer.
“The irony is that one of the most deadly viruses in the world can be useful in treating one of the deadliest brain tumors,” the researchers said. Scientists find ally in the fight against brain tumors.
This approach takes advantage of the weaknesses of most cancerous tumors and protects Ebola from the immune system’s response to pathogens.
Unlike normal cells, most cancer cells cannot produce innate immune responses to intruders such as viruses.
This has prompted cancer researchers to investigate the use of viruses to fight various types of cancer.
Using viruses is an obvious risk – they can cause potentially dangerous infections. To overcome this problem, scientists, including Van Paul, are experimenting with producing or testing chimeric viruses or a combination of several viruses.
They have the ability to target cancer cells without harming the patient.
One of the seven Ebola virus genes that helped it escape the immune system also contributed to her death. That fascinates van Paul. Scientists find ally in the fight against brain tumors.
He and the study’s first author, Xiu Zhang, also from Yale, used a chimeric virus containing one of the Ebola virus genes, a glycoprotein from the linear mucin domain (MLD). In the wild type Ebola virus, MLD plays a role in hiding Ebola from the immune system.
They injected this chimeric virus into the glioblastoma mouse brain and found that MLD helped to target and kill deadly brain tumors caused by glioblastoma.
(The team works with MLD glycoprotein, not a full Ebola virus.)
Researchers say that the beneficial effect of MLD seems to be to protect normal cells from infection, but not cancer cells that do not have the ability to trigger an immune response to pathogens. Scientists find ally in the fight against brain tumors.
The main factor could be that the MLD glycoprotein virus replicates faster, which might make it safer than a virus without the MLD portion of glycoprotein, the researchers said. Theoretically, such a virus could be used in conjunction with surgery to remove glioblastoma tumors and prevent cancer from returning, the researchers said.