Cancer-Killing Virus on the March!


LOS ANGELES, Calif. (Ivanhoe Newswire) – Almost everyone knows someone who has battled cancer.  Standard care involves chemo and radiation, medication, and immunotherapies. Now, for the first time ever, clinical trials are underway testing a new virus that targets deadly cancer cells and wipes them out. Cancer-Killing Virus

Colon, lung, breast, ovarian, pancreatic — almost a million people will be diagnosed with one of these cancers in the coming year.

City of Hope surgical oncologist, Yuman Fong, MD, tells Ivanhoe, “People over the decades have been trying to find viruses to kill certain types of cancers for a long time. What we decided was that rather than doing that, why don’t we just find viruses that kill any type of cancer?”

(Read Full Interview)

Dr. Fong has been working for decades to find a virus that stimulates the immune system to track down all types of cancer. Now, he thinks he’s created it.

“We actually created a panel of brand-new viruses and then, we screened it against the NCI 60 – that stands for the National Cancer Institute panel of 60 cancers that generally, any new cancer therapies are screened against,” Dr. Fong explains.

The virus, called Vaxinia, also makes the cancer cells much more recognizable to the immune system, making it easier for immunotherapies to target the invading cancer cells.

Dr. Fong further explains, “We are convinced that by having this virus, we will not only be able to directly attack the cancer and stimulate our immune system, but we will be able to partner with other agents that also do that and together, grow therapies for cancers that, until now, have no treatment.”

The phase one trial, focused on safety, is now underway in City of Hope institutions across the country. At the time of this interview, six patients with metastatic or advanced solid tumors had been given a low dose of the virus. This phase of the study aims to recruit a hundred patients who have had a least two prior lines of standard care treatment, such as chemo and radiation, but have not seen any positive results from those standard treatments.

Contributors to this news report include: Marsha Lewis, Producer; Roque Correa, Videographer & Editor.

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REPORT:       MB #5136

BACKGROUND: Cancer is a disease in which some of the body’s cells grow uncontrollably and spread to other parts of the body. Cancerous tumors spread into, or invade, nearby tissues and can travel to distant places in the body to form new tumors (a process called metastasis). Cancerous tumors may also be called malignant tumors. Many cancers form solid tumors, but cancers of the blood, such as leukemias, generally do not. In 2022, roughly 1.9 million people will be diagnosed with cancer in the United States. An estimated 287,850 women and 2,710 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer, which makes it the most common cancer diagnosis. Prostate cancer is the leading cancer diagnosis among men and the second most common diagnosis overall with 268,490 expected cases. Lung cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosis with an estimated 236,740 new cases.


DIAGNOSING: Signs and symptoms caused by cancer will vary depending on what part of the body is affected. Some general signs and symptoms associated with, but not specific to, cancer, include lump or area of thickening that can be felt under the skin, Weight changes, including unintended loss or gain, weight changes, including unintended loss or gain, skin changes, changes in bowel or bladder habits, and/or unexplained bleeding or brusing.


NEW TECHNOLOGY: City of Hope and Imugene Limited, a clinical stage immuno-oncology company, announced that the first patient was dosed in a Phase 1 clinical trial evaluating the safety of novel cancer-killing virus CF33-hNIS VAXINIA when used in people with advanced solid tumors. The City of Hope-developed oncolytic virus has been shown to shrink colon, lung, breast, ovarian and pancreatic cancer tumors in preclinical laboratory and animal models. Oncolytic virus therapy is made possible once viruses found in nature are genetically modified to infect, replicate in and kill cancer cells, while sparing healthy cells. While immune checkpoint inhibitors have been effective in certain cancers, patients often relapse and eventually stop responding to or develop resistance to this type of treatment. Early research shows oncolytic viruses can prime a person’s immune system and increase the level of PD-L1 in tumors, making immunotherapy more effective against cancer.



Zen Logsdon

(626) 409-9367

If this story or any other Ivanhoe story has impacted your life or prompted you or someone you know to seek or change treatments, please let us know by contacting Marjorie Bekaert Thomas at

Doctor Q and A

Read the entire Doctor Q&A for Dr. Yuman Fong, MD, surgical oncologist and chair of the Department of Surgery

Read the entire Q&A