Injecting the flu vaccine into a tumor gets the immune system to attack it

Injecting the flu vaccine into a tumor gets the immune system to attack it

Enlarge (credit: picture alliance/Getty Images)

A number of years back, there was a great deal of excitement about using viruses to target cancer. A number of viruses explode the cells that they've infected in order to spread to new ones. Engineering those viruses so that they could only grow in cancer cells would seem to provide a way of selectively killing these cells. And some preliminary tests were promising, showing massive tumors nearly disappearing.

But the results were inconsistent, and there were complications. The immune system would respond to the virus, limiting our ability to use it more than once. And some of the tumor killing seemed to be the result of the immune system, rather than the virus.

Now, some researchers have focused on the immune response, inducing it at the site of the tumor. And they do so by remarkably simple method: injecting the tumor with the flu vaccine. As a bonus, the mice it was tested on were successfully immunized, too.

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https://arstechnica.com/?p=1637703

Source: Ars Technica

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