To Treat Cancer


Western Oncolytics develops novel therapies for cancer. We take cutting-edge treatments that show promise in early laboratory research and demonstrate their value to patients in clinical trials. We expect that our technology, novel immuno-oncolytic therapies, can extend the lives of, or outright cure, patients across a wide range of cancer types, while avoiding the severe side effects common with current cancer therapies. Thus, we aim to use the most sophisticated science to give life and hope to cancer patients.


With the advent of genetic engineering, viruses have been designed to infect only cancer cells while also delivering therapeutic genes. Several such therapies have demonstrated efficacy in randomized patient trials. This approach can be ideal for treating cancers that are spreading (metastic), and holds promise to be more effective and tolerable than any currently available therapy.


Western Oncolytics is developing three pre-clinical stage therapies based on modified vaccinia virus:


Designed specifically to target STAT3 protein activity, enhancing viral therapeutic activity while triggering an immunotherapeutic response. Higher STAT3 levels are associated with many cancers, and levels of active STAT3 correlate with worse prognoses for patients.  Additional genetic modifications result in a novel targeted delivery system, directing the viral therapy to the tumor and then enhancing its spread within the tumor. 


Designed to amplify the virus’s direct therapeutic effects in cancer cells while also increasing tumor sensitivity to established oncology drugs, such as many chemotherapies or immunotherapies.  While capable of treating nearly any solid tumor, early evidence suggests particular promise for intraperitoneal cancers and obese patients, a patient population for whom most existing therapies are less effective.


Incorporates multiple transgenes and modifications to activate and modify the patient’s immune system to better respond to cancer.  This technology is currently in a development collaboration with Pfizer, Inc. (watch video)