Zika Virus May be Useful in Treating Brain Tumors

Source: US National Library of Medicine 9/7/2017

 

Thu, 07 Sep 2017 05:33:00 EST

 

“Zika virus used to treat aggressive brain cancer,” BBC News reports. Animal and laboratory research suggests a modified version of the virus could possibly be used to target and destroy cancerous cells.

The Zika virus was first discovered in 1947. It hit the headlines in 2016 when an epidemic of the virus began quickly spreading through parts of South and Central America.

The virus, spread by mosquitoes, rarely causes serious problems in adults. But it can lead to birth defects, specifically microcephaly (a small, not fully developed head), if a woman contracts the virus when pregnant.

The virus has the ability to cross from the blood into the brain, so researchers wanted to see if it could be used to treat a very aggressive type of brain cancer called glioblastoma.

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