Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Immunology
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

Cancer Vaccine Begins Phase I Clinical Trials

Published: Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Last Updated: Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Cross-disciplinary team brings novel therapeutic cancer vaccine to human clinical trials.

A cross-disciplinary team of scientists, engineers, and clinicians announced today that they have begun a Phase I clinical trial of an implantable vaccine to treat melanoma, the most lethal form of skin cancer.

The effort is the fruit of a new model of translational research being pursued at Harvard University that integrates the latest cancer research with bioinspired technology development. It was led by David J. Mooney, who is the Robert P. Pinkas Family Professor of Bioengineering at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and a Core Faculty Member at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard, along with Glenn Dranoff, who is co-leader of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Cancer Vaccine Center, a professor at Harvard Medical School, and an associate faculty member at the Wyss Institute.

Most therapeutic cancer vaccines available today require doctors to first remove the patient’s immune cells from the body, then reprogram them and reintroduce them back into the body. The new approach, which was first reported to eliminate tumors in mice in Science Translational Medicine in 2009, instead uses a small disk-like sponge about the size of a fingernail that is made from FDA-approved polymers. The sponge is implanted under the skin, and is designed to recruit and reprogram a patient’s own immune cells “on site,” instructing them to travel through the body, home in on cancer cells, then kill them.

The technology was initially designed to target cancerous melanoma in skin, but might have application to other cancers. In the preclinical study reported in Science Translational Medicine, 50 percent of mice treated with two doses of the vaccine—mice that would have otherwise died from melanoma within about 25 days—showed complete tumor regression.

“Our vaccine was made possible by combining a wide range of biomedical expertise that thrives in Boston and Cambridge,” said Mooney, who specializes in the design of biomaterials for tissue engineering and drug delivery. “It reflects the bioinspired engineering savvy and technology development focus of engineers and scientists at the Wyss Institute and Harvard SEAS, as well as the immunological and clinical expertise of the researchers and clinicians at Dana-Farber and Harvard Medical School.”

“This is expected to be the first of many new innovative therapies made possible by the Wyss Institute’s collaborative model of translational research that will enter human clinical trials,” said Wyss Founding Director Don Ingber, who is also the Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology at Harvard Medical School and Boston Children's Hospital, and a Professor of Bioengineering at Harvard SEAS. “It validates our approach, which strives to move technologies into the clinical space much faster than would be possible in a traditional academic environment. It’s enormously gratifying to see one of our first technologies take this giant leap forward.”

The Wyss Institute comprises a consortium of researchers, engineers, clinicians, and staff with industrial and business development experience from Harvard University and nine other collaborating institutions in Greater Boston.

“It is rare to get a new technology tested in the laboratory and moved into human clinical trials so quickly,” said Dranoff, who also leads the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Program in Cancer Immunology. “We’re beyond thrilled with the momentum, and excited about its potential.”

Recruitment of participants for the clinical trial began recently under the leadership of F. Stephen Hodi, Jr., Director of Dana-Farber’s Melanoma Center and Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. The goal of the Phase I study, which is expected to conclude in 2015, is to assess the safety of the vaccine in humans.

The cancer vaccine work has received support from the Wyss Institute, Dana-Farber, and the National Institutes of Health. In addition to Mooney, Dranoff, and Hodi, other collaborators include Edward Doherty and Omar Ali at the Wyss Institute; Jerry Ritz, Director of the Cell Processing Laboratory at Dana-Farber; Sara Russell and Charles Yoon, surgeons at Dana-Farber; and other clinical research team members based at Dana-Farber.


Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,500+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 3,700+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Asthma Cells Scramble Like ‘There’s a Fire Drill’
Movement offers insight into mechanisms of asthma, other diseases.
Friday, August 14, 2015
Giant Leap Against Diabetes
Ability to produce embryonic stem cells will allow researchers to push faster toward cure.
Friday, October 10, 2014
Airway Muscle-On-A-Chip Mimics Asthma
Tissue-level model of human airway musculature could pave way for patient-specific asthma treatments.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Viral Infections May Have Met Their Match
Researchers ID protein that sets off body's response to fight infection.
Friday, November 29, 2013
Scientific News
Inciting an Immune Attack on Cancer Cells
A new minimally invasive vaccine that combines cancer cells and immune-enhancing factors could be used clinically to launch a destructive attack on tumors.
Inflammation Linked to Colon Cancer Metastasis
A new Arizona State University research study led by Biodesign Institute executive director Raymond DuBois has identified for the first time the details of how inflammation triggers colon cancer cells to spread to other organs, or metastasize.
New Strategy for Combating Adenoviruses
Using an animal model they developed, Saint Louis University and Utah State university researchers have identified a strategy that could keep a common group of viruses called adenoviruses from replicating and causing sickness in humans.
Major Advance Toward More Effective, Long-Lasting Flu Vaccine
Collaboration shows vaccine candidate can produce powerful ‘broadly neutralizing antibodies’ in animal models.
Immune System: Help for Killer Cells
A study from the University of Bonn may show the way to more effective vaccines.
Protein Found to Control Inflammatory Response
A new Northwestern Medicine study shows that a protein called POP1 prevents severe inflammation and, potentially, diseases caused by excessive inflammatory responses.
A Leap Forward in Vaccinating Against HIV
A team of scientists has developed an experimental vaccine candidate that successfully stimulates the immune system activity in animal models necessary to stop HIV infection.
MRI Scanners Can Steer Therapeutics to Specific Target Sites
Scientists from the University of Sheffield have discovered MRI scanners, normally used to produce images, can steer cell-based, tumour busting therapies to specific target sites in the body.
Agricultural Intervention Improves HIV Outcomes
A multifaceted farming intervention can reduce food insecurity while improving HIV outcomes in patients in Kenya, according to a randomized, controlled trial led by researchers at UC San Francisco.
Team Finds Early Inflammatory Response Paralyzes T Cells
Findings could have enormous implications for immunotherapy, autoimmune disorders, transplants and other aspects of immunity.
SELECTBIO

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,500+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FREE!