A plant virus might be the key to curing cancer?

The Tradition

HR King
Apr 23, 2002
108,497
81,179
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SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Not all viruses are bad, and one in particular may have the power to stop cancer. Researchers at the University of California-San Diego are studying how a plant virus called cowpea mosaic virus stops cancer and prevents it from coming back. Their latest research shows that when the virus infects cancerous cells, it signals to the immune system and extends the anti-cancer response toward the tumor.

Cowpea mosaic virus is an infectious plant virus that commonly targets legumes. For the past seven years, however, study authors have been using animal models to determine its potential as a cancer immunotherapy treatment.

“This study helps validate the cowpea mosaic plant virus nanoparticle as our lead cancer immunotherapy candidate,” Nicole Steinmetz, a professor of nanoengineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering and the director of the Center for NanoImmunoEngineering, in a university release. “Now we have mechanistic data to explain why it is the most potent candidate, which further de-risks it for clinical translation.”

The perfect bait for fighting cancer?​

The team has studied the cowpea mosaic virus in the form of nanoparticles. They injected the nanoparticles directly into the tumor to serve as bait for the immune system. Once the lure is set, immune cells detect the viral nanoparticles and send alarms to the rest of the immune system of a foreign invader in the body. While the immune cells build up to fight the virus, they start to eliminate the cancerous cells once they realize cowpea mosaic virus is inside a tumor.

Not only does the virus help get rid of the existing tumor, but Dr. Steinmetz notes that it also triggers a systemic immune response against any future tumors. While not studied in humans yet, they have observed this immune effect in canines and mouse models of various types of cancer. The cowpea mosaic virus is also unique in that it triggers an anti-cancer response that scientists don’t see in other plant viruses or virus-like particles.

“We’ve shown that it works, and now we need to show what makes it so special that it can induce this kind of response,” says lead author Veronique Beiss, a former postdoctoral researcher in Dr. Steinmetz’s lab. “That’s the knowledge gap we’re looking to fill.”

The virus triggers more disease-killing inflammation​

To look at anti-tumor efficacy in similar plant viruses, the team compared the cowpea mosaic viruses with two plant viruses from the same family with similar shapes and sizes. The cowpea severe mosaic virus shared a similar RNA sequence and protein makeup. The other plant virus, the tobacco ringspot virus, only had a similar structure.

They then infected a melanoma tumor in mice with three doses of each virus-based nanoparticle immunotherapy given a week apart. Mice receiving the cowpea mosaic virus nanoparticles were more likely to survive and have the smallest tumors than those that did not. The tumor growth stopped about four days after the second dose.

Afterward, the researchers took immune cells from the spleen and lymph nodes from mice. They found that all plant viruses contain a protein shell to activate toll-like receptors that are on the surface of immune cells. However, the cowpea mosaic virus takes an extra step by using its RNA to activate an extra toll-like receptor. Activating additional toll-like receptors leads to more pro-inflammatory proteins called cytokines appearing and strengthening the immune response against cancer.

Another way the cowpea mosaic virus increases the immune response is by extending the cytokine response.

“We don’t see this with the other two plant viruses. The cytokine levels peak quickly, then go down and are gone,” explains Beiss. “This prolonged immune response is another key difference that sets cowpea mosaic virus apart.”

The study is published in the journal Molecular Pharmaceutics.

 

GOHOX69

HR Legend
Sep 26, 2009
12,565
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I was hoping you'd reply to this thread. I don't know if that was the response I was looking for.
Cancer is an exquisitely complex disease with multiple paths to malignancy. I always cringe seeing these articles. It offers folks false hope. If you want to know about immunotherapy, i urge you to ask any oncologist how car t and car nk are doing in clinic. Except for very specialized and localized tumors, it's been a big flop mainly due to its inability to differentiate between good tissue and cancerous tissue.
 

Joes Place

HR King
Aug 28, 2003
119,051
110,032
113
Cancer is an exquisitely complex disease with multiple paths to malignancy. I always cringe seeing these articles. It offers folks false hope. If you want to know about immunotherapy, i urge you to ask any oncologist how car t and car nk are doing in clinic. Except for very specialized and localized tumors, it's been a big flop mainly due to its inability to differentiate between good tissue and cancerous tissue.

You're just wanting to hoard all the cancer-curing cow-pee for yourself!!!
You FAKE!!!! 😡
 

DFSNOLE

HR Legend
Sep 25, 2002
17,905
38,881
113
Lower Alabama
Cancer is an exquisitely complex disease with multiple paths to malignancy. I always cringe seeing these articles. It offers folks false hope. If you want to know about immunotherapy, i urge you to ask any oncologist how car t and car nk are doing in clinic. Except for very specialized and localized tumors, it's been a big flop mainly due to its inability to differentiate between good tissue and cancerous tissue.
Thanks. I'm smart enough to rely on smarter people.
 
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HawkRCID

HR All-American
Nov 7, 2018
3,623
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Very cool! I truly believe in my lifetime I may see the defeat of many/most cancers. Yay science!

Though I’m sure there will be videos online saying not to take the plant virus vaccine as it is a hoax or something (boo MAGA)
 

GOHOX69

HR Legend
Sep 26, 2009
12,565
15,267
113
Thanks. I'm smart enough to rely on smarter people.
You're welcome. Solid tumors are a pain in the ass. We have a better beat on blood borne and lymphatic cancers although as you can see from our fellow user's daughters death, we are far far far away from a reliable and consistent cure.
 

denmar81

HR Heisman
Gold Member
Mar 26, 2006
6,169
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Now the big drug companies can give a bunch of cash for them to say false alarm, it doesn’t work.
 
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93hawkeye

HR MVP
Sep 19, 2004
2,206
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If it works 15% of the time and can be patented and sold for six figures per course of treatment, then OF COURSE it will be approved for use
 

chalupa81

HR All-State
Gold Member
Apr 14, 2005
550
580
93
Waukee, Iowa
You're welcome. Solid tumors are a pain in the ass. We have a better beat on blood borne and lymphatic cancers although as you can see from our fellow user's daughters death, we are far far far away from a reliable and consistent cure.

We are batting my sons stupid solid tumor right now. Always have to keep hope.
 
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GOHOX69

HR Legend
Sep 26, 2009
12,565
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We are batting my sons stupid solid tumor right now. Always have to keep hope.
I'm very sorry to hear that. I hope he does beat it. If i may ask, what type of cancer is it? If you believe in God, I hope God blesses your son and family.
 

GOHOX69

HR Legend
Sep 26, 2009
12,565
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My prayers will include your son and family. @GOHOX69 , aren’t they playing with ways of tagging the cancer to target natural killer cells?
CA's, the nk cells are actually the thing getting modified. Using crispr, we place an receptor on the nk cells specific for the antigen expressed on the tumor cells. Nk cells normally engage cells which show lack of expression of what are called major histocompatibility complex molecules. Cancer cells normally downregulate mhc expression so they become attractive targets for nk cells. The crispr addition to the nk cells adds specificity for the patients particular tumor.
 

BubsFinn

HR Legend
Nov 20, 2004
27,485
21,128
113
Creepshow.jpg
 
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DFSNOLE

HR Legend
Sep 25, 2002
17,905
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Lower Alabama
CA's, the nk cells are actually the thing getting modified. Using crispr, we place an receptor on the nk cells specific for the antigen expressed on the tumor cells. Nk cells normally engage cells which show lack of expression of what are called major histocompatibility complex molecules. Cancer cells normally downregulate mhc expression so they become attractive targets for nk cells. The crispr addition to the nk cells adds specificity for the patients particular tumor.
Like you're speaking to a five year old please.
 
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ClarindaA's

HR Legend
Jun 3, 2002
20,575
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CA's, the nk cells are actually the thing getting modified. Using crispr, we place an receptor on the nk cells specific for the antigen expressed on the tumor cells. Nk cells normally engage cells which show lack of expression of what are called major histocompatibility complex molecules. Cancer cells normally downregulate mhc expression so they become attractive targets for nk cells. The crispr addition to the nk cells adds specificity for the patients particular tumor.
Nice, so do they need to get biopsies and figured out what antigen receptor is needed, or do all cancer cells of a certain type, say glioblastoma, have the same antigen even between different patients. Further, in an area like the brain where the blood-brain barrier is probably an issue, are there alternated delivery methods to the tumor ?
 

GOHOX69

HR Legend
Sep 26, 2009
12,565
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Couple people had a couple of questions so I thought I'd address them.

Principles of car nk.
Version 1. Not done much anymore.
Remove patients nk cells, grow them, use gene editing i.e. crispr, put in receptor to patient's tumor antigen. Reintroduce into patient and see what happens.
Weaknesses. Costly, time consuming and have to match to each patient.
Version 2. New school.
Take neonatal cells. Reprogram them to ips stem cells. Then delete out the genes by gene editing that makes them immunogenic. Then take these cells and make nk cells. Then introduce a tumor antigen that is expressed and conserved in most tumors. Reintroduce these cells into any patient with any type of solid tumor. Since they lack the proteins for immune rejection, we can all get them. Since we don't have to seek specific tumor antigens, they can be delivered quickly in treatment. This basically becomes a drug of sorts, costs drop, consistency increases and quality control is easier.

CA's, as a parent, you are well versed in cancer treatment. You are right that there is a blood brain barrier and for brain tumors, you cannot use the circulation to introduce these or even cerebrospinal fluid. That's why they make a hole in the skull and use stereotactic approaches. There are other agents that can go through the bbb but that's another topic entirely.

Best wishes.
 
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hawksurprize

HR Heisman
Gold Member
Oct 1, 2001
7,781
1,345
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SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Not all viruses are bad, and one in particular may have the power to stop cancer. Researchers at the University of California-San Diego are studying how a plant virus called cowpea mosaic virus stops cancer and prevents it from coming back. Their latest research shows that when the virus infects cancerous cells, it signals to the immune system and extends the anti-cancer response toward the tumor.

Cowpea mosaic virus is an infectious plant virus that commonly targets legumes. For the past seven years, however, study authors have been using animal models to determine its potential as a cancer immunotherapy treatment.

“This study helps validate the cowpea mosaic plant virus nanoparticle as our lead cancer immunotherapy candidate,” Nicole Steinmetz, a professor of nanoengineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering and the director of the Center for NanoImmunoEngineering, in a university release. “Now we have mechanistic data to explain why it is the most potent candidate, which further de-risks it for clinical translation.”

The perfect bait for fighting cancer?​

The team has studied the cowpea mosaic virus in the form of nanoparticles. They injected the nanoparticles directly into the tumor to serve as bait for the immune system. Once the lure is set, immune cells detect the viral nanoparticles and send alarms to the rest of the immune system of a foreign invader in the body. While the immune cells build up to fight the virus, they start to eliminate the cancerous cells once they realize cowpea mosaic virus is inside a tumor.

Not only does the virus help get rid of the existing tumor, but Dr. Steinmetz notes that it also triggers a systemic immune response against any future tumors. While not studied in humans yet, they have observed this immune effect in canines and mouse models of various types of cancer. The cowpea mosaic virus is also unique in that it triggers an anti-cancer response that scientists don’t see in other plant viruses or virus-like particles.

“We’ve shown that it works, and now we need to show what makes it so special that it can induce this kind of response,” says lead author Veronique Beiss, a former postdoctoral researcher in Dr. Steinmetz’s lab. “That’s the knowledge gap we’re looking to fill.”

The virus triggers more disease-killing inflammation​

To look at anti-tumor efficacy in similar plant viruses, the team compared the cowpea mosaic viruses with two plant viruses from the same family with similar shapes and sizes. The cowpea severe mosaic virus shared a similar RNA sequence and protein makeup. The other plant virus, the tobacco ringspot virus, only had a similar structure.

They then infected a melanoma tumor in mice with three doses of each virus-based nanoparticle immunotherapy given a week apart. Mice receiving the cowpea mosaic virus nanoparticles were more likely to survive and have the smallest tumors than those that did not. The tumor growth stopped about four days after the second dose.

Afterward, the researchers took immune cells from the spleen and lymph nodes from mice. They found that all plant viruses contain a protein shell to activate toll-like receptors that are on the surface of immune cells. However, the cowpea mosaic virus takes an extra step by using its RNA to activate an extra toll-like receptor. Activating additional toll-like receptors leads to more pro-inflammatory proteins called cytokines appearing and strengthening the immune response against cancer.

Another way the cowpea mosaic virus increases the immune response is by extending the cytokine response.

“We don’t see this with the other two plant viruses. The cytokine levels peak quickly, then go down and are gone,” explains Beiss. “This prolonged immune response is another key difference that sets cowpea mosaic virus apart.”

The study is published in the journal Molecular Pharmaceutics.

Interesting and good news as well
 
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