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Data from a U.K. Translational Colorectal Cancer Study has been presented at the International Symposium on CTL and Immunostimulation

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The presentation was given by principal investigator Professor Alan Melcher of Leeds Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Leeds, UK.

The trial is an open-label, non-randomized, single centre study of REOLYSIN given intravenously to patients for five consecutive days in advance of their scheduled operations to remove colorectal cancer deposits metastatic to the liver. Patients were treated with intravenous REOLYSIN at 1x1010 TCID50, one to three weeks prior to planned surgery. After surgery, the tumour and surrounding liver tissue was assessed for viral status and anti-tumour effects.

On histological analysis of six patients to date, there was evidence of replication and tumour cell death in the tumours of four of six patients, two of which had confirmed Kras mutations in codon 12 (the most common ras mutation).  The other two of these four patients' samples were still being analyzed for Kras status. There was no evidence of replication in samples analyzed from two of the six patients.  The researchers concluded that reovirus can be successfully delivered specifically to colorectal liver metastases following intravenous administration as a monotherapy and that pre-operative treatment was safe, suggesting that application of oncolytic viral therapy can be widened to the neoadjuvant setting. Further translational studies with biological endpoints, particularly co-administering reovirus with chemotherapy, would further inform how to maximize the efficacy of this novel biotherapy in cancer patients.

"This compelling data shows that following even a single course of treatment with REOLYSIN that reovirus can target and replicate specifically in metastatic colorectal cancer tumours and that there is a correlation with Kras status," said Dr. Brad Thompson, President and CEO of Oncolytics. "The interim findings from this study are further supportive of our decision to conduct a Phase I study of REOLYSIN in combination with FOLFIRI in patients with oxaliplatin refractory/intolerant Kras mutant colorectal cancer."