Virus plus rapamycin kills glioblastoma stem cells

Share this article:

An oncolytic virus infected and killed both brain cancer stem cells and differentiated compartments of the common and deadly malignant brain tumor, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), when combined with the immunosuppressant drug rapamycin.

Because oncolytic virotherapy has the potential to target multiple compartments within GBM, this form of treatment may be able to work around some of the barriers facing conventional therapies, explained Peter A. Forsyth, MD, and fellow investigators in Neuro-Oncology (2013;15[7]:904-920). Forsyth, of the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute in Tampa, Florida, worked with a team to test the oncolytic potential of myxoma virus alone and in combination with rapamycin using human brain tumor–initiating cells (BTICs).

Laboratory cultures and animal models revealed that brain cancer stem cells were susceptible to myxoma virus. This was true even in cell lines resistant to temozolomide, an agent that can improve survival among persons with GBM. In mice, the virus replicated within the BTICs and significantly prolonged survival.

The addition of rapamycin to myxoma virus improved antitumor activity, including in mice with advanced BTIC tumors.

The study results suggest that myxoma virus in combination with rapamycin infects and kills both the BTICs and the differentiated compartments of GBM, and, although not curative, may be an effective treatment for GBM even in patients resistant to temozolomide.
Share this article:
You must be a registered member of ONA to post a comment.

Sign Up for Free e-newsletters

Regimen and Drug Listings

GET FULL LISTINGS OF TREATMENT Regimens and Drug INFORMATION

Bone Cancer Regimens Drugs
Brain Cancer Regimens Drugs
Breast Cancer Regimens Drugs
Endocrine Cancer Regimens Drugs
Gastrointestinal Cancer Regimens Drugs
Genitourinary Cancer Regimens Drugs
Gynecologic Cancer Regimens Drugs
Head and Neck Cancer Regimens Drugs
Hematologic Cancer Regimens Drugs
Lung Cancer Regimens Drugs
Other Cancers Regimens
Rare Cancers Regimens
Skin Cancer Regimens Drugs

More in Web Exclusives

Calcium isotope analysis predicts myeloma progression

Researchers believe that a staple of Earth science research can be used in biomedical settings to predict the course of disease.

Biomarker for aggressive, basal-like breast cancer identified

A biomarker strongly linked to basal-like breast cancer has been identified.

Tumor suppressor mutations alone do not explain deadly cancer

Although mutations in a gene dubbed the "guardian of the genome" are recognized as being associated with more aggressive cancers, evidence suggests that the deleterious health effects of the mutated gene may in large part be due to other genetic abnormalities.