Virotherapy is a cancer treatment that uses oncotropic and oncolytic viruses with the ability of a virus to find and destroy malignant cells in the body. The earliest documented facts on observation of viruses affecting specific diseases date back to the beginning of the 20th century.

At present, many of the leading clinics in China, Japan, USA, and Canada are conducting clinical trials to testsimilar viruses;yet so far in oncology exists only one natural virus with oncoptropic and oncolytic qualities,officially registered and introduced into the medical practice -medicine Rigvir.

The first studies began in the A. Kirchenstein Institute of Microbiology in the 1960s, led by Professor Aina Muceniece, known as the founder of Latvian virotherapy. In the laboratory of cancer virotherapy 60 different types of enteroviruses were tested, and it was discovered that the ECHO-7 virus has the most expressed oncotropic and oncolytic qualities. Afterwards, the scientists selected and adapted the virus to melanoma cells, naming it Rigvir (“Riga virus”). Long-term experiments were carried out with tumour tissue cultures as well as animals; and after receiving numerous permits, studies were conducted at three clinics in Latvia. The studies showed that the Rigvir virus is nonpathogenic and unable to replicate in a body of an adult human.

The first country where Rigvir medicine was registered is Latvia, but since February 2015 Rigvir is registered also in Georgia. At the moment patients from more than 40 countries have received virotherapy with Rigvir by using medical tourism.


RIGVIR®is the first viral medication in the world with anticancer and immunomodulating qualities, which is already introduced in the medical practice. RIGVIR®contains an adapted live enterovirus (ECHO strain virus) which is nonpathogenic and not genetically modified.

RIGVIR®is indicated for cancer treatment, prevention of its recurrences, metastases, and secondary immune deficiency. It also functions as an immunomodulator by activating the immune cells. RIGVIR® efficacy and safety have been tested on several thousand patients.



After administration, RIGVIR® by expression of surface receptors selectively infects tumour cells. This process is called oncotropism.

RIGVIR® replicates in tumour cells and directly destroys them. This process is called oncolysis.

Both of these processes, oncotropism and oncolysis, are selective for tumour cells, while healthy normal cells are minimally affected.

Upon tumour cell rupture, RIGVIR® is released and spreads to nearby tumour cells. The processes are repeated.

RIGVIR® properties:  

  • Safe and effective
  • Clinically proven
  • Well tolerated
  • High terapeutic index
  • Improves quality of life
  • Not genetically modified
  • Oncotropic and oncolytic
  • Immunomodulating efficacy
  • Ambulatory use

RIGVIR® is used in the treatment of different cancer types: Rigvir006

  • melanoma,
  • stomach cancer,
  • colorectal cancer,
  • pancreatic cancer,
  • kidney cancer,
  • bladder cancer,
  • prostate cancer,
  • lung cancer,
  • uterine cancer,
  • various types of sarcoma:
    • lymphosarcoma,
    • angiosarcoma,
    • rhabdomyosarcoma,
    • reticulosarcoma.

Virotherapy treatment

Virotherapy with Rigvir is an individual therapy that can be assigned for the treatment of several cancer types. The possibility of receiving virotherapy is assessed by a qualified oncologist or immunologist in every separate cancer patient case.

Virotherapy is assigned before and after surgery and in separate cases – in the intervals between chemo- and radiotherapy courses, in order to diminish the effect of immunosuppression, caused by the latter therapies. The method of Rigvir administration – intramuscular injections (ambulatory).

The best results are achieved on early stages of cancer. The disease-free and metastases-free post-operation period as well as the survival are extended, and the life quality of oncology patients is improved. Therapy effect is greatly defined by the immune status and character of cancer process at the point when the treatment is started.  

Virotherapy is extremely important in the treatment of those very aggressive cancer types that are insensitive to chemotherapy and radiotherapy, such as melanoma, renal cell carcinoma.

For more information visit International Virotherapy Center's webpage: www.virotherapy.eu



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