Oncolytic virotherapy using herpes simplex virus: how far have we come?

Nicolas A. S. Sokolowski, Helen Rizos, Russell J. Diefenbach

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    Oncolytic virotherapy exploits the properties of human viruses to naturally cause cytolysis of cancer cells. The human pathogen herpes simplex virus (HSV) has proven particularly amenable for use in oncolytic virotherapy. The relative safety of HSV coupled with extensive knowledge on how HSV interacts with the host has provided a platform for manipulating HSV to enhance the targeting and killing of human cancer cells. This has culminated in the approval of talimogene laherparepvec for the treatment of melanoma. This review focuses on the development of HSV as an oncolytic virus and where the field is likely to head in the future.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)207-219
    Number of pages13
    JournalOncolytic virotherapy
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Bibliographical note

    Copyright the Author(s) 2015. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


    • herpes simplex virus
    • cancer
    • immunity
    • combination therapy
    • oncolysis


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