Jun 24, 2019 | Updated: 11:41 AM EDT

Artificially Designed Virus That Attacks Cancer Tumor Cells, Developed By Scientists

May 31, 2017 03:10 AM EDT

Creating artificial viruses were said to have the body's immune system send out cells to target cancer cells.
(Photo : Chris Hondros/Getty Images) Researchers discovered that sending artificial viruses allows the body's immune system to make its defense system more active.

Amid no cure nor vaccines for cancer, Swiss scientists were reported to have developed an innovative way to battle cancer cells. The scientists created artificial viruses that alert the body’s immune system in order for it to send killer cells to target the tumors.

According to Science Daily, Swiss virologists from the University of Basel and the University of Geneva (UNIGE) worked together to design artificial viruses to aid in eliminating tumor cells. The researchers then designed a model based on the virus known as lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCMV) which is known to attack both animals and human.

With that said, UNIGE’s Doron Merkler along with senior author Daniel Pinschewer involved rodents as the participants in the experiment. The team then injected a group of mice with the artificial virus LMCV in order to activate their immune system’s interleukin-33. The interleukin-33 was then identified to alarm the immune system to attack tumor cells.

Researchers then studied the rodents’ immune system in order to assess their response to cancerous cells. The result was then concluded to be that the immune system of the mice injected with the artificially designed virus were ten times more active compared that of that of control mice as reported by Digital Trends.

“It has been known for almost a century that infection with lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) induces killer T cell responses of virtually unmatched potency. We thus set out to leverage this feature of LCMV infection for the purpose of cancer immunotherapy, where killer T cells represent a key mechanism of protection,” Pinschewer, one of the senior authors of the study and University of Basel researcher explained.

Moreover, the designed virus cells developed by the researchers were said to not be a method to be used as a total cure for cancer. But instead, a process of boosting the immune cells in battling tumor cells. The research papers on the study were published in the journal Nature Communications.

Pinschewer then strongly said that the experiment was done successfully in rodents. However, the success in human therapy isn’t still known. Rest assured, Pinschewer believes that upcoming human trials will be conducted within the next two years.

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