Developing a live anti-cancer agent derived in most cases from human pathogens presents a unique set of challenges to clinical development versus those anticipated with standard chemotherapeutics and small molecules. The selection of therapeutic targets for oncolytic virus (OV) clinical development, as is true with the development of any agent for cancer therapy, requires careful consideration beyond preclinical and early clinical data, especially when multiple indications may initially appear equally promising. Further, the added complexity of the potential for infectious complications following OV therapy must be anticipated in order to efficiently and safely conduct clinical studies. As more OV enter the clinic, these issues will become increasingly important to successful OV drug development.
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