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Res Microbiol. 2015 May;166(4):244-54. doi: 10.1016/j.resmic.2014.12.006. Epub 2015 Jan 7.

The potential of clostridial spores as therapeutic delivery vehicles in tumour therapy.

Author information

1
Clostridia Research Group, BBSRC/EPSRC Synthetic Biology Research Centre (SBRC), School of Life Sciences, The University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2RD, UK.
2
Clostridia Research Group, BBSRC/EPSRC Synthetic Biology Research Centre (SBRC), School of Life Sciences, The University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2RD, UK. Electronic address: nigel.minton@nottingham.ac.uk.

Abstract

Despite substantial investment in prevention, treatment and aftercare, cancer remains a leading cause of death worldwide. More effective and accessible therapies are required. A potential solution is the use of endospore forming Clostridium species, either on their own, or as a tumour delivery vehicle for anti-cancer drugs. This is because intravenously injected spores of these obligate anaerobes can exclusively germinate in the hypoxic/necrotic regions present in solid tumours and nowhere else in the body. Research aimed at exploiting this unique phenomenon in anti-tumour strategies has been ongoing since the early part of the 20th century. Only in the last decade, however, has there been significant progress in the development and refinement of strategies based on spore-mediated tumour colonisation using a range of clostridial species. Much of this progress has been due to advances in genomics and our ability to modify strains using more sophisticated gene tools.

KEYWORDS:

Cancer therapy; Clostridia; Hypoxia; Prodrug; Prodrug converting enzyme; Spores

PMID:
25576776
DOI:
10.1016/j.resmic.2014.12.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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