Zika virus during pregnancy can cause serious birth defects and can cause devastating brain damage in babies. This development has given rise to a surprise new treatment for adult brain cancer, according to US scientists.
Zika has been viewed as a global health threat but this latest research shows the virus can selectively infect and kill stubborn cancerous cells in adult brains. Experts believe Zika virus could potentially be injected into the brain at the same time as surgery to remove life-threatening tumours, the Journal of Experimental Medicine reports.
Radiotherapy, chemotherapy and surgery may not be enough to remove these invasive cancers like Glioblastomas etc but the latest research, in living mice and donated human brain tissue samples, shows Zika therapy can kill cells that tend to be resistant to current treatments.
Adult brains, however, have very few stem cells. This means Zika treatment should destroy only the cancer-causing brain stem cells without causing much collateral damage.
PICTURE CREDIT: medindia.net