Gene therapy for cancer: bacteria-mediated anti-angiogenesis therapy.
Several bacterial species have inherent ability to colonize solid tumors in vivo. However, their natural anti-tumor activity can be enhanced by genetic engineering that enables these bacteria express or transfer therapeutic molecules into target cells. In this review, we summarize latest research on cancer therapy using genetically modified bacteria with particular emphasis on blocking tumor angiogenesis. Despite recent progress, only a few recent studies on bacterial tumor therapy have focused on anti-angiogenesis. Bacteria-mediated anti-angiogenesis therapy for cancer, however, is an attractive approach given that solid tumors are often characterized by increased vascularization. Here, we discuss four different approaches for using modified bacteria as anti-cancer therapeutics--bactofection, DNA vaccination, alternative gene therapy and transkingdom RNA interference--with a specific focus on angiogenesis suppression. Critical areas and future directions for this field are also outlined.