Viruses are able to penetrate cells, produce both foreign and viral proteins, multiply, and ultimately kill infected cells, raising new hope in cancer therapy. Clinical trials involving first oncolytic (cancer-killing) viruses are very promising, although there is still a significant need for their optimization. This includes the development of viruses with increased specificity and efficacy, scalable and robust methods for their production, and models for their preclinical testing.
In the TheraVision project, the Fraunhofer Institutes ITEM, ISC, IZI, and ITWM, coordinated by Fraunhofer IGB, aim to establish a broadly applicable platform technology based on Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV1) for combinatorial oncolytic virus immunotherapy. As proof of concept, an oncolytic virus is being developed for the therapy of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC).