In July, John McCain (R-Ariz.) announced his brain cancer disease, and it appears to be that this is the target of a recent study which shows the possibility of using Zika virus in alleviation.
Glioblastomas is a hard to treat cancer of the brain, and around 12,000 people are diagnosed with this health condition yearly in the U.S. The standard means of alleviation focuses on chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation, but there seems to be a new movement.
The bad gone good
Researchers have spotted the Zika virus – a virus that endangers fetus health and causes death in most cases- as an apt therapy for Glioblastoma because the brain tumor cells divide and grow in the same manner as the fetuses.
Zika hones its focus on fetus stem cells, researchers believed it could do same to glioblastoma cells. This was published in a journal of Experimental Medicine on Sept. 5
The several neuro progenitor stem cells in a human fetus give an insight on how damaging the Zika virus can be to the brain. Adults who posses less neuro progenitor cells experience fewer severe symptoms including joint pain and fever when exposed to Zika.
The study author and a professor at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Dr. Michael Diamond said they have secured optimism about the Zika therapy. In a bid to test their theory, Diamond, his team and the researcher from the University Of California San Diego School Of Medicine injected salt water placebo or Zika into the tumors in mice’s brains. After two weeks, there was a clear difference between the mice that got the placebo injection form those that got the Zika injection.
The researchers also tested with injecting a mutated type of Zika virus into mice and observed that the weaker version still killed tumor cells. The mutant version that is weaker should not be too hard for the healthy cells in the body to overcome.
It’s good to know that the human trials may come up in 18 months time if everything works out fine. Diamond said that he hopes to have the human trials, and it goes well; it will be added to the conventional alleviation methods to kill resistant tumor cells. But there’s the need to test for safety in humans to ascertain if it works in human Glioblastomas.