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A virus that causes childhood coughs and colds could help in the fight against liver cancer, a study led by the ICR’s Professor Alan Melcher has shown. 

Reovirus stimulates the body’s own immune system to kill off the cancerous cells – and it is also able to kill off the hepatitis C virus, a common cause of liver cancer. 

These early-stage findings are important because liver cancer is the third greatest cause of cancer deaths worldwide and if surgery is not an option, the prognosis is poor.

 Study co-leader Professor Alan Melcher, Professor of Translational Immunotherapy at the ICR, said: “Our study establishes a completely new type of viral immunotherapy for the most common liver cancer type, hepatocellular carcinoma, which has a very poor prognosis in its advanced form.”

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