Oncolytic viruses and antibodies: are they more successful when delivered separately or when engineered as a single agent?
Wan PK-T., Fernandes RA., Seymour LW.
Oncolytic viruses (OVs) provide the promise of tumor-selective cytotoxicity coupled with amplification of the therapeutic agent (the virus) in situ within the tumor improving its therapeutic index. Despite this promise, however, single agent-treatments have not been as successful as combination therapies, particularly combining with checkpoint inhibitor antibodies. The antibodies may be delivered by two approaches, either encoded within the OV genome to restrict antibody production to sites of active virus infection or alternatively given alongside OVs as separate treatments. Both approaches have shown promising therapeutic outcomes, and this leads to an interesting question of whether one approach is potentially better than the other. In this review, we provide a brief summary of the combination OV-antibody therapies that target tumor cells, tumor microenvironment and immune cells to help define key parameters influencing which approach is superior, thereby improving insight into the rational design of OV treatment strategies.