Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Vaccine technique shows potential against common form of lung cancer

14.02.2003


In a demonstration of vaccine therapy’s potential for treating lung cancer, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute scientists and their associates report that a prototype vaccine boosted the natural immune response to tumors in a small group of patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Moreover, the vaccine was found to be non-toxic and well-tolerated.



Published in the Feb. 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, findings from the Phase I clinical trial will provide an impetus for further efforts to develop a vaccine against NSCLC, a difficult-to-treat condition that accounts for roughly 80 percent of all lung cancer cases. (Phase I trials are designed primarily to assess the safety of an experimental treatment.)

"This work represents a new approach to a vaccine for lung cancer patients,” says senior author Glenn Dranoff, MD, of Dana-Farber. "We’re still at an early stage, but the results of this study are encouraging. They offer a ’proof of principle’ that this technique can strengthen the normal immune response to NSCLC tumors and will help form the basis for testing the vaccine in patients with earlier stage lung cancer."


The technique was originally developed for patients with advanced melanoma, a form of cancer that begins in the skin but can be deadly if allowed to spread to other parts of the body.

The researchers created the melanoma vaccine by removing a portion of a patient’s tumor and using specially equipped viruses to insert a gene known as GM-CSF into the tumor cells. After being radiated and injected into the patient, the manipulated tumor cells began producing the granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) protein, which acted as a magnet for an immune system attack on tumor cells. As the researchers had hoped, the vaccine elicited a potent, long-lasting immune response targeted at the melanoma tumor cells and produced only minor side effects.

In the lung cancer study, researchers developed vaccines for 34 of the 35 enrolled patients with metastatic, or spreading, NSCLC. Nine of these patients had to withdraw from the study after their disease progressed rapidly, but researchers found heightened levels of immune-system cells in 18 of 25 patients whose condition could be assessed after vaccination. Tumor samples removed after vaccination showed infiltration by immune-system cells and tumor-cell death in three of six patients. Side effects were minor, mostly involving irritation at the site of the vaccine injection.

Two patients, the removal of whose tumors for vaccine preparation left them with no evidence of the disease, remained disease-free more than three years after vaccination. Five patients had periods of stable disease ranging from three to 33 months.

"The results demonstrate that the technique can raise antitumor immunity in some patients with NSCLC," states Dranoff, who is also an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. "It is important to keep these findings in proper perspective: they are promising but still preliminary. More research needs to be done to see if these results occur in larger studies and in people with earlier stages of NSCLC."

Ravi Salgia, MD, PhD, of Dana-Farber, and Thomas Lynch, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital, were first authors of the paper. Other contributors are based at Dana-Farber, Children’s Hospital Boston, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Cell Genesys of Foster City, Calif.



Funding for the study was provided by the National Institutes of Health, the Cancer Research Institute, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and Cell Genesys.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is a principal teaching affiliate of the Harvard Medical School and is among the leading cancer research and care centers in the United States. It is a founding member of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center (DF/HCC), designated a comprehensive cancer center by the National Cancer Institute.


Bill Schaller | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.dfci.harvard.edu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Inselspital: Fewer CT scans needed after cerebral bleeding
20.03.2019 | Universitätsspital Bern

nachricht Building blocks for new medications: the University of Graz is seeking a technology partner
19.03.2019 | Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The taming of the light screw

DESY and MPSD scientists create high-order harmonics from solids with controlled polarization states, taking advantage of both crystal symmetry and attosecond electronic dynamics. The newly demonstrated technique might find intriguing applications in petahertz electronics and for spectroscopic studies of novel quantum materials.

The nonlinear process of high-order harmonic generation (HHG) in gases is one of the cornerstones of attosecond science (an attosecond is a billionth of a...

Im Focus: Magnetic micro-boats

Nano- and microtechnology are promising candidates not only for medical applications such as drug delivery but also for the creation of little robots or flexible integrated sensors. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) have created magnetic microparticles, with a newly developed method, that could pave the way for building micro-motors or guiding drugs in the human body to a target, like a tumor. The preparation of such structures as well as their remote-control can be regulated using magnetic fields and therefore can find application in an array of domains.

The magnetic properties of a material control how this material responds to the presence of a magnetic field. Iron oxide is the main component of rust but also...

Im Focus: Self-healing coating made of corn starch makes small scratches disappear through heat

Due to the special arrangement of its molecules, a new coating made of corn starch is able to repair small scratches by itself through heat: The cross-linking via ring-shaped molecules makes the material mobile, so that it compensates for the scratches and these disappear again.

Superficial micro-scratches on the car body or on other high-gloss surfaces are harmless, but annoying. Especially in the luxury segment such surfaces are...

Im Focus: Stellar cartography

The Potsdam Echelle Polarimetric and Spectroscopic Instrument (PEPSI) at the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) in Arizona released its first image of the surface magnetic field of another star. In a paper in the European journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, the PEPSI team presents a Zeeman- Doppler-Image of the surface of the magnetically active star II Pegasi.

A special technique allows astronomers to resolve the surfaces of faraway stars. Those are otherwise only seen as point sources, even in the largest telescopes...

Im Focus: Heading towards a tsunami of light

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have proposed a way to create a completely new source of radiation. Ultra-intense light pulses consist of the motion of a single wave and can be described as a tsunami of light. The strong wave can be used to study interactions between matter and light in a unique way. Their research is now published in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

"This source of radiation lets us look at reality through a new angle - it is like twisting a mirror and discovering something completely different," says...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Modelica Conference with 330 visitors from 21 countries at OTH Regensburg

11.03.2019 | Event News

Selection Completed: 580 Young Scientists from 88 Countries at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting

01.03.2019 | Event News

LightMAT 2019 – 3rd International Conference on Light Materials – Science and Technology

28.02.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Laser processing is a matter for the head – LZH at the Hannover Messe 2019

25.03.2019 | Trade Fair News

A Varied Menu

25.03.2019 | Life Sciences

‘Time Machine’ heralds new era

25.03.2019 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>