The virus no one wants that could eradicate cancer

When you think of the herpes simplex virus, not much that’s pleasant comes to mind.

In addition to causing cold sores (or worse), the virus has also been linked to increased risk for dangerous brain inflammation and doubling your chances of developing Alzheimer’s.

Having the herpes virus in your system can even leave you vulnerable to multiple sclerosis and cause you to suffer from chronic constipation.

But what if the virus that can wreak so much havoc could also be used for good?

That’s exactly the word from scientists at the Institute for Cancer Research (ICR) in London who’ve created a genetically-engineered version of the herpes virus they’ve used to eradicate or shrink tumors in terminally ill patients.

Tumors disappeared, shrank or stopped progressing

After developing a weakened version of the herpes simplex virus, the scientists at ICR injected it directly into the tumors of patients with advanced skin, esophageal and head and neck cancers.

And here’s what happened:

  • One man with salivary gland cancer had his tumor disappear completely and he remained cancer-free for 15 months after the start of the treatment.
  • Three out of nine patients treated with the genetically-engineered virus saw their tumors shrink
  • Seven out of 30 patients treated with a combination of the virus and immunotherapy also benefitted from treatment — with six remaining cancer progression-free at 14 months.
  • Four out of nine patients with melanoma had their cancer’s growth shrink or halt completely.
  • Two out of eight patients with the eye cancer known as uveal melanoma grabbed the same benefit.
  • The viral injection halted or shrunk cancer growth in one out of three patients with head and neck cancer.

A two-pronged attack on tumors

How can a virus that can do so much damage to the body offer such amazing cancer-fighting benefits?

Well, according to the researchers, injecting the weakened virus into a tumor launches a two-pronged attack.

Study leader Professor Kevin Harrington, Professor of Biological Cancer Therapies at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, explains it this way: “Our study shows that a genetically engineered, cancer-killing virus can deliver a one-two punch against tumors — directly destroying cancer cells from within while also calling in the immune system against them.”

As the virus multiplies within cancer cells, it causes them to burst from within. At the same time, it blocks a protein called CTLA-4, which releases the brakes on the immune system so that it can do its job and go to work killing cancer cells.

Professor Kristian Helin, Chief Executive of The Institute of Cancer Research, London, sums it up by saying, “Viruses are one of humanity’s oldest enemies, as we have all seen over the pandemic. But our new research suggests we can exploit some of the features that make them challenging adversaries to infect and kill cancer cells.”

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Sources:Genetically modified herpes virus delivers one-two punch against advanced cancers — The Institute of Cancer Research

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Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

By Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst is a board-certified Doctor of Chiropractic, with more than 20 years of experience. She has dedicated herself to helping others enjoy life at every age through the use of alternative medicine and natural wellness options. Dr. Schmedthorst enjoys sharing her knowledge with the alternative healthcare community, providing solutions for men and women who are ready to take control of their health the natural way.