Implications of immune cells in oncolytic herpes simplex virotherapy for glioma

Yoshihiro Otani, Ji Young Yoo, Toshihiko Shimizu, Kazuhiko Kurozumi, Isao Date, Balveen Kaur

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Despite current progress in treatment, glioblastoma (GBM) remains a lethal primary malignant tumor of the central nervous system. Although immunotherapy has recently achieved remarkable survival effectiveness in multiple malignancies, none of the immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) for GBM have shown anti-tumor efficacy in clinical trials. GBM has a characteristic immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment (TME) that results in the failure of ICIs. Oncolytic herpes simplex virotherapy (oHSV) is the most advanced United States Food and Drug Administration-approved virotherapy for advanced metastatic melanoma patients. Recently, another oHSV, Delytact®, was granted conditional approval in Japan against GBM, highlighting it as a promising treatment. Since oncolytic virotherapy can recruit abundant immune cells and modify the immune TME, oncolytic virotherapy for immunologically cold GBM will be an attractive therapeutic option for GBM. However, as these immune cells have roles in both anti-tumor and anti-viral immunity, fine-tuning of the TME using oncolytic virotherapy will be important to maximize the therapeutic efficacy. In this review, we discuss the current knowledge of oHSV, with a focus on the role of immune cells as friend or foe in oncolytic virotherapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-64
Number of pages8
JournalBrain Tumor Pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Glioma
  • Immune cells
  • Oncolytic virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research


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