We have finally stumbled onto a breakthrough. As reported by BBC, the Zika virus is a potential weapon to be employed for the elimination of brain cancer.
The Zika Virus, Brain Cancer, and Treatment
The aforementioned discovery is shocking, especially since the Zika virus is, what many people would consider, inherently dangerous. The virus is contracted after receiving a bite from a contaminated mosquito. Although symptoms of infection are minimal, the Zika virus has horrific impacts, especially on unborn children.
Fetuses infected with the Zika virus are afflicted with microcephaly. Microcephaly causes abnormally small heads and subpar brain development for babies. Sadly, microcephaly is incurable, although treatment can help.
However, despite all of this, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Based on experiments performed on mice and human cell samples, the Zika virus has the potential to combat and eliminate cancerous cells and tumors. The Journal of Experimental Medicine theory states that inserting the Zika virus into the brain during surgery could kill cells that appear to be immune to current treatments.
A More In Depth Analysis
In a fascinating paradox, the disease may in fact be the cure. Glioblastoma is one of many types of brain cancers, one of which is susceptible to the Zika virus treatment. The glioblastoma cells appear to grow and multiply rapidly, making more orthodox treatment methods challenging. However, the nature of the Zika virus appears strong enough to take on the rapid glioblastoma cells.
The discovery of the Zika virus as a potential cure for human brain cancer is still relatively new. There are a plethora of additional, necessary tests and procedures.
Dr Michael Diamond, a researcher, gave the following statements pertaining to the potential upsides of the Zika virus:
In light of the aforementioned developments, other institutions are adopting this practice. According to University of Cambridge scientists:
“This promising research shows that a modified version of the Zika virus can attack brain tumour cells in the lab. This could one day lead to new treatments for this particularly hard to treat type of cancer.”
The test of the Zika virus on humans will launch within a year and a half. More updates will follow this story as new developments arise.