English program

Oncolytic Virotherapy

09:00 am - 12:15 pm
Kongresshaus, Sitzungsraum 7 (2nd floor)
Morning Sitzungsraum 7 (2nd floor)
* Sponsored by International Virotherapy Center Limited, Dubai (United Arab Emirates)
09:00 - 09.45 am

Development of Oncolytic Virotherapy
Dr. med. Dr. habil. med. Assoc. Prof. Dace Baltina, International Virotherapy Center, Riga (Latvia)


Despite significant progress in the treatment of certain forms of cancer, in general it remains a major cause of death. Most metastatic solid tumors remain incurable. Though modern therapies have added some years to the life of the average cancer patient, they have not reduced the patient's chances of dying from the disease. Therefore, new agents with novel mechanism of action and lacking cross-resistance to the currently available approaches are needed. Drugs that could be used either alone or in combination with other treatment modalities, that may be affordable, safe and acceptable for cancer patients.
Since the turn of the last century, viruses have attracted considerable interest also as possible agents of tumor destruction. Interest in the field of cancer virology has fluctuated during this time, reaching fever pitch in the 1950s and 1960s, followed by near-abandonment in the 1970s and 1980s and resurgence of interest during the last two decades, culminating in the first marketing approval of an oncolytic virus, granted by Latvian regulators for a native, genetically non-modified ECHO-7 strain virus RIGVIR in April 2004, immediately followed by another but genetically modified oncolytic adenovirus in China in November 2005 and thereafter by another genetically modified herpes virus Imlygic® in 2015.
In Latvia ECHO-7 strain virus (RIGVIR) is officially registered for the treatment of cutaneous melanoma, and since 2011 it has been fully reimbursed by the government. In 2015 ECHO-7 strain virus was included in the National Guidelines for the Treatment of Skin Malignancies, approved by the Ministry of Health of Latvia. Two respective studies showed published in Melanoma Research in 2015 concluded that this medicine may prolong survival 4-6 times and grant outstanding progression free period.
Oncolytic virotherapy has now become a clinically validated treatment of cancer, with ECHO-7 strain virus being on the stage for about a half of a century. Clinical data and astonishing case reports will be presented.

09:45 - 10:15 am Break
10:15 - 11:00 am

Immunotherapy with Oncolytic Virus ECHO-7 in clinical practice – case reports
Dr. Linda Brokane, Global Virotherapy Cancer Clinic, Riga (Latvia)


Despite advances in cancer therapy over the last decade, including the introduction of targeted medicines and checkpoint inhibitors, cancer remains as one of the most pressing health care challenges. Therefore novel treatment strategies are at a demand.
Oncolytic viruses (OV) are a promising new class of therapeutics that rely on tumour specific oncolysis and induction of a potent adaptive anti-tumour immune response for efficacy.
The presentation will share clinical experience with oncolytic virus both as an effective monotherapy in cancer treatment, as well as using its ability to be rationally combined with other immunotherapeutic agents to achieve a more robust clinical response.

11:00 - 11:30 am Break
11:30 am - 12:15 pm

Oncolytic Virus in the multi-level treatment of advanced cancers
Dr. Florian Schilling, Bangkok (Thailand)


Advanced cancers issue a challenge as they often show a poor response to many well-established therapies, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy. In addition, the risk for complications and side effects is significantly higher than in early stages of the disease. Therefore, the idea of a multi-level approach, combining different low or medium intensity procedures is reasonable but yet not entrenched in the guidelines. One of the most promising fields in treating advanced cancers is immune therapy. A rising number of targeted therapies, such as checkpoint inhibitors as well as cellular therapies like Dendritic cell vaccination are currently on hand. Synergistic to these approaches, the use of oncolytic virus offers an additional and non-invasive treatment option. With this lecture, we present a number of different late-stage cancers treated with a multi-level approach, comprising pharmacological, physical and immunologic procedures such as Insulin potentiated low dose chemotherapy, hyperthermia, photodynamic therapy, checkpoint inhibitors, Dendritic cells and oncolytic virus treatment. The results are promising and encourage to evolve the idea of a minimal invasive multi-level approach in the treatment of advanced cancers.