Over the last few years, a conditionally replicating herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) vector, G207 has been used for the treatment of several malignant tumors. In this article we evaluate the anti-tumoral effect of G207 against prostate cancer in vitro and in vivo. The susceptibility of the human prostate cancer cell lines, DU145 and PC3 to G207 at a multiplicity of infection (MOI) of 0.1 was examined. In addition, the growth characteristics of G207 were assessed. Athymic mice with s.c. tumors were inoculated in vivo intraneoplastically with 1 x 10(7) plaque-forming units (PFU) of G207. For the pathological analyses, s.c. tumors were stained with X-gal. DU145 and PC3 were efficiently destroyed by G207 within 7 days. The viral yields of G207 increased time-dependently. In vivo, the intraneoplastic inoculation of G207 induced a significant inhibition of the tumor growth. The mean tumor growth ratio was significantly inhibited in the G207-treated tumors (DU145, P < 0.0001; PC3, P < 0.001 versus controls). In a pathological study, many lacZ-positive cells were diffusely present in the G207-treated tumors. G207 showed a significant antitumoral effect against human prostate cancer cell lines, and thus may be considered a useful agent for the treatment of prostate cancer.