This may sound strange to you, that a variation of the herpes virus could be used in a positive way, but it’s really true. There is a possibility that a version of it, which has gone through extensive modification could be used to help treat skin cancer.
The most common effect of the bad kind of herpes is sores, especially around your mouth, and whilst this is generally harmless, it can fight cancer cells, by replicating and releasing specific substances.
Medical trials have taken place, and it’s not like everyone should be celebrating quite yet – it’s said that at the moment, there is potential for the cancer to be held at bay for a few years, and it won’t be able to help everyone.
However, as herpes is a virus, it can be treated as a virus treatment. The best bit about that, is that it can be targeted, meaning that you don’t need to subject your entire body to the modified herpes, but just the cancerous cells. As well as this, the side effects have so far shown to be not as bad as standard chemotherapy one might receive, as well as some of the other treatments.
There is currently one study taking place, and this is involving around 430 patients from different countries across the world, and the patients are suffering from malignant melanoma which is inoperable.
This is a light somewhere in the tunnel for the treatment of cancer, as more and more, research is being done, and positive results being found, that shows that we are slowly winning the big battle against cancer. It’s said that now, around 50% of those with cancer will survive it, and all little developments like this, although not massively ground breaking, can help to improve patients’ quality of life, extend it by a few years, and also lead the research into the future!