The news of a new type of cancer therapy. The latter would make use of a weakened form of the virus ofcold sores, herpes simplex, to infect and destroy harmful cells. While larger and longer studies will be needed, the Bbc speaks of very promising results in the first tests on man: one patient’s cancer disappeared, while others have seen their tumors shrink. 39-year-old Krzysztof Wojkowski, diagnosed with salivary gland cancer in 2017, for example, has decided to take part in the ongoing phase one safety study conducted by the Institute of Cancer Research at the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust. A short course of virus-based therapy injections every two weeks, appears to have eliminated his cancer. The injections, practiced directly into the tumor, would act in two ways: invading cancer cells and causing them to burst, and in parallel activating the immune system. About 40 patients tried the treatment as part of the study. Some have been given the injection of the virus, called RP2, alone. Others also received another anticancer drug, called nivolumab. The results show that 3 out of 9 patients treated with RP2 alone, including Krzysztof, saw their tumors shrink. Seven out of 30 who received combination treatment also appeared to benefit. Side effects, such as fatigue, were generally mild. ‘It is rare to see such good response rates in early stage clinical trials,’ said the professor Kevin Harringtonat the head of the research.
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