Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
GLOBETECH MEDIA
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC

Vaccine Application Extends Life of Metastatic Prostate Cancer Patients

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 24 Feb 2010
In a newly published clinical trial, patients with metastatic prostate cancer who received a vaccine of harmless poxviruses engineered to trigger an immune system attack on prostate tumor cells lived considerably longer than patients who received a placebo vaccine.

The study's findings were published by the Journal of Clinical Oncology on its website in January 2010, and scheduled for later print publication. The randomized phase II study was performed by researchers from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (Boston, MA, USA) and affiliated organizations. The study involved the PROSTVAC-VF vaccine, a combination of two weakened poxviruses that have been genetically programmed to produce slightly irregular versions of prostate specific antigen (PSA)--a protein on the surface of prostate cells that is abnormal in many prostate cancers--and three costimulatory molecules that spur the immune system to a more vigorous attack on tumor cells.

The double-blinded trial included 125 patients with metastatic prostate cancer who did not respond to standard, hormone-lowering therapy. Eighty-two of the participants received the vaccine, produced by BN ImmunoTherapeutics, Inc. (Mountain View, CA, USA), and 40 received a placebo.

At the three-year point after the study, 30% of the PROSTVAC-VF patients were alive, versus 17% of the control group. The median survival of the vaccine group was 24.5 months, compared to 16 months for the control group, an 8.5-month increase.

Patients tolerated the vaccine well; only a small number experienced side effects such as fatigue, fevers, and nausea. "Although this study is relatively small, it offers encouraging evidence of a clinically meaningful benefit from this vaccine approach,” said lead investigator and lead author Philip Kantoff, M.D., of Dana-Farber, who helped design the trial.

Investigators are now planning a phase III trial that will enroll about 600 patients to evaluate further the vaccine's effectiveness.

Related Links:

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
BN ImmunoTherapeutics



Channels

Genomics/Proteomics

view channel
Image: The photo shows a mouse pancreatic islet as seen by light microscopy. Beta cells can be recognized by the green insulin staining. Glucagon is labeled in red and the nuclei in blue (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons).

Regenerative Potential Is a Trait of Mature Tissues, Not an Innate Feature of Newly Born Cells

Diabetes researchers have found that the ability of insulin-producing beta cells to replicate and respond to elevated glucose concentrations is absent in very young animals and does not appear until after weaning.... Read more

Drug Discovery

view channel
Image: Wafers like the one shown here are used to create “organ-on-a-chip” devices to model human tissue (Photo courtesy of Dr. Anurag Mathur, University of California, Berkeley).

Human Heart-on-a-Chip Cultures May Replace Animal Models for Drug Development and Safety Screening

Human heart cells growing in an easily monitored silicon chip culture system may one day replace animal-based model systems for drug development and safety screening. Drug discovery and development... Read more

Biochemistry

view channel
Image:  Model depiction of a novel cellular mechanism by which regulation of cryptochromes Cry1 and Cry2 enables coordination of a protective transcriptional response to DNA damage caused by genotoxic stress (Photo courtesy of the journal eLife, March 2015, Papp SJ, Huber AL, et al.).

Two Proteins Critical for Circadian Cycles Protect Cells from Mutations

Scientists have discovered that two proteins critical for maintaining healthy day-night cycles also have an unexpected role in DNA repair and protecting cells against genetic mutations that could lead... Read more

Business

view channel

Roche Acquires Signature Diagnostics to Advance Translational Research

Roche (Basel, Switzerland) will advance translational research for next generation sequencing (NGS) diagnostics by leveraging the unique expertise of Signature Diagnostics AG (Potsdam, Germany) in biobanks and development of novel NGS diagnostic assays. Signature Diagnostics is a privately held translational oncology... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2015 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.