Martikainen M, Ruotsalainen J, Tuomela J, Härkönen P, Essand M, Heikkilä J, Hinkkanen A
Br. J. Cancer 117 (1) 51-55 [2017-06-27; online 2017-05-30]
Despite recent therapeutic and diagnostic advances, prostate cancer remains the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among men in the Western world. Oncolytic viruses that replicate selectively in tumour cells represent a novel treatment candidate for these malignancies. We analysed infectivity of avirulent Semliki Firest virus SFV-VA7 in human prostate cancer cell lines VCaP, LNCaP and 22Rv1 and in nonmalignant prostate epithelial cell line RWPE-1. Therapeutic potency of SFV-VA7 was evaluated in subcutaneous and orthotopic mouse LNCaP xenograft models. SFV-VA7 infected and killed the tested human prostate cancer cell lines irrespective of their hormone response status, while the nonmalignant prostate epithelial cell line RWPE-1 proved highly virus resistant. Notably, a single peritoneal dose of SFV-VA7 was sufficient to eradicate all subcutaneous and orthotopic LNCaP tumours. Our results indicate that SFV-VA7 is a novel, promising therapeutic virus against prostate cancer warranting further testing in early clinical trials.