Historic! For the first time, a cancer-killing virus has been injected into a human

Deepak Gupta May 25, 2022
Updated 2022/05/25 at 10:45 PM

According to Público, cancer deaths rose 20% worldwide in the space of a decade. Therefore, and because the search for a cure has been incessant, this news about the first patient injected with a virus that aims to eliminate the problem is to be welcomed with open arms.

Despite being a clinical trial of an experimental process, it is a solution that could prove to be promising.

Around the world, millions and millions of people are subjected to treatments that weaken them and do not always save them. However, despite the frightening numbers, there is no known cure, there are only ways to prevent the onset of various cancers.

Now, for the first time, an experimental cancer-killing virus was administered to a human patient. This solution comes as a hope that tests will conclude that this method is effective in fighting cancerous tumors in the human body.

The possible drug called CF33-hNIS (or Vaxinia), is an oncolytic, that is, a virus genetically modified to selectively infect and kill cancer cells while avoiding healthy cells.


According to Science Alert, this modified virus works by duplicating cells. That is, the injected cell bursts and causes the release of thousands of new virus particles that act as antigens, stimulating the immune system to attack nearby cancer cells.

Although previous animal research has shown that the drug can harness the immune system to hunt down and destroy cancer cells, no human trials have been done. So far.

The clinical trial has already started that will find out if the virus that kills cancer is safe

Investigators at the Cancer Care and Research Center city ​​of hopein Los Angeles, in conjunction with the biotechnology company immunogenbased in Australia, announced the first clinical trial in human patients.

Our previous research has shown that oncolytic viruses can stimulate the immune system to respond to and kill the cancer, as well as stimulate the immune system to be more sensitive to other immunotherapies.

We believe that CF33-hNIS has the potential to improve outcomes for our patients.

Said Daneng Li, an oncologist and principal investigator at city ​​of hope.

Daneng Li, oncologist and principal investigator at City of Hope

Daneng Li, oncologist and principal investigator at City of Hope

The potential of this virus will depend on how safe it is to be injected into people, and the first phase of the clinical trial focuses on exactly that aspect: the safety and tolerance of and to the drug.

The objective is for the trial to gather 100 participants, being them adult patients, with metastases or advanced solid tumors, who have already tried at least two series of standard treatment. Once enrolled, patients will receive a low dose of the experimental treatment.

If the results are successful, and the virus is considered safe for this purpose, additional tests will be done to investigate how it associates with pembrolizumab, an antibody treatment used in cancer immunotherapy.

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