Siberian lab creates cancer-killer viruses

The time when pre-clinical tests of the drug may start depends on state entities that verify drugs and therapeutic methods. Source: Shutterstock

The time when pre-clinical tests of the drug may start depends on state entities that verify drugs and therapeutic methods. Source: Shutterstock

A laboratory in the city of Novosibirsk has designed genetically modified viruses capable of destroying cancer cells. It is now targeting cures for breast, colon, lung and brain cancer.

The Novosibirsk State University Microbiology and Virology Laboratory has designed genetically modified viruses capable of destroying cancer cells, laboratory head Pyotr Chumakov told reporters on Friday.

"We were highly successful in vitro, and tests run on laboratory animals also showed promise. Besides, we have tested [the viruses] in veterinarian pathologies, for instance, pedigree dogs frequently have cancer,” Chumakov said.

The laboratory is dealing with several classes of viruses targeting cures for breast, colon, lung and brain cancer, he said.

"I do not rule out that many of them will have a broader use,” the scientist said, adding that the laboratory was using non-pathogenic viruses.

The time when pre-clinical tests of the drug may start depends on state entities that verify drugs and therapeutic methods, he continued.

Many countries have been working on oncolytic viruses, which has proven their safety and efficiency, he said.

Chumakov believes that the technique may become widespread within a decade.

The Novosibirsk State University Microbiology and Virology Laboratory was set up with a government grant allocated in 2010.

It is supervised by Chumakov, head of the Russian Academy of Sciences Molecular Biology Institute Cell Proliferation Laboratory and the molecular genetics laboratories of the U.S. Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute and the Case Western Reserve University.

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