Long-Term Research Aim:
To successfully treat solid tumors employing gene transfer and virotherapy approaches.
Mid-Term Research Aims:
- To test oncolytic measles virus derivatives in preclinical tumor models with special focus on gliomas, breast cancer and prostate cancer.
- To retarget measle virus strains against tumor-specific antigens.
- To test novel viral delivery approaches such as cell mediated delivery in preclinical models.
- To test immunomodulatory strategies as a means of further increasing viral replication in vivo.
- To continue with the current and new phase I/phase II gene therapy and virotherapy clinical trials in solid tumors in order to translate promising transgene/vector systems and oncolytic viruses to the clinic.
I am principal investigator in several clinical trials through the Division of Medical Oncology, examining the therapeutic potential of: 1) a measles virus derivative encoding the human carcinoembryonic antigen (MV-CEA) in patients with recurrent glioblastoma multiforme; 2) a measles virus derivative encoding the sodium iodine symporter gene (MV-NIS) in patients with recurrent ovarian cancer; 3) a phase II trial of Reovirus in patients with metastatic melanoma; 4) a phase II trial of vaccinia virus in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma; 5) several trials of small molecule cell cycle inhibitors such as histone deacetylase inhibitors, proteasome inhibitors, sarc-kinase inhibitors and antiangiogenesis approaches in glioma patients, conducted through the North Central Cancer Treatment Group (NCCTG).