Oncolytic viruses driven by tumor-specific promoters

Jayson Hardcastle, Kazuhiko Kurozumi, E. Antonio Chiocca, Balveen Kaur

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Oncolytic viruses can selectively replicate in and lead to tumor cell lysis with minimal infection/replication potential in adjoining non-neoplastic tissue. Because of paramount safety concerns, first-generation oncolytic viruses were designed to be significantly attenuated in their lytic potential. Results from recent clinical trials have revealed the safety of this approach, but have underscored the urgency for design and testing of more tumor-selective and -potent viruses to realize the full therapeutic potential of this revolutionary treatment modality. With the discovery of various molecular/genetic changes associated with neoplasia, tumor-specific transcriptional targeting of viral virulence is being tapped to generate tumor- and tissue-specific variants. This review will focus on the various strategies exploited to generate viruses whose virulence is governed by tumor-specific transcriptional events.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-189
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent cancer drug targets
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Adenovirus
  • Cancer
  • HSV-1
  • Oncolytic viruses
  • Promoter
  • Transcriptional regulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Cancer Research


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