May 19, 2017 10:02 AM EDT
Scientists are taking a new approach to using the Zika virus in order to kill the brain cancer cells. The experiments could explore pioneering ways to fight cancer.
A team of scientists is working in Britain to invent ways to treat glioblastoma, a common form of the brain cancer. This type of cancer has maximum five-year survival rate and only five percent can have that opportunity. Now scientists are trying to bring a breakthrough in this arena by using the Zika virus.
Zika virus creates acute disability in babies by affecting their developing brain stem cells, Reuters reported. But, this virus can't have any major impact in adults as their brains are fully developed. The virus can only cause symptoms like the mild-flu problem in the adults.
The important fact is cancer cells related to glioblastoma are similar whether it is in the adult persons or in the developing brain. This is why the new research is suggesting the use of the Zika virus to kill the targeted cells. The virus could help to kill the cancer cells while sparing the normal adult brain tissue.
The current and existing treatments need more care to prevent damaging the healthy tissues. Now the new experiment about the Zika virus could produce a more effective outcome. Harry Bulstrode of the Cambridge University leads a team of researchers to see the outcome of the test.
The research team will use the tumor cells in mice and in the lab to understand the potentiality of the Zika virus. This mosquito-borne virus was first detected in 2015 in Brazil. Above sixty countries and huge territories in the world have already experienced the impact of this virus. In a word, that world has witnessed a global outbreak of it.
Last year the Zika virus was a matter of concern for many people when they heard that the virus was responsible for the birth defects. According to The Irish Times, people were even worried about the traveling to the Caribbean states of the U.S. and the Latin America. It is true that the virus still exists and an important issue of the current year that is 2017.
Zika virus is a major issue of concern for the pregnant women. Searching is still going on for the proper vaccine to prevent the infection of the virus. Currently, proper measures are necessary to get rid of the bacteria-infected mosquitoes.
Harry Bulstrode said that infection of the Zika virus in the children and the babies is a major global problem. Now the aim is to explore more and more information about this virus so that new treatments can be discovered to address this issue. The researchers are trying to find ways to use this virus to treat the crucial health disease cancer.
Bulstrode expects that they could show in the test lab that the Zika virus can decrease the growth of the brain tumor. The research team is aiming to understand the virus's ability to target the stem cells in the brain after crossing the essential blood brain barrier. If the team can learn this mystery, then the future treatments will get new dimensions.