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Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2012 Feb;61(2):157-168. doi: 10.1007/s00262-011-1093-4. Epub 2011 Aug 20.

Immunological responses in cancer patients after vaccination with the therapeutic telomerase-specific vaccine Vx-001.

Author information

1
Laboratory of Tumor Biology, Medical School, University of Crete, Voutes, 71110, Heraklion, Crete, Greece. vetsika@edu.med.uoc.gr.
2
Laboratory of Tumor Biology, Medical School, University of Crete, Voutes, 71110, Heraklion, Crete, Greece.
3
Department of Medical Oncology, University General Hospital of Heraklion, Crete, Greece.
4
Vaxon Biotech, Paris, France.
5
Department of Medical Oncology, "IASO" General Hospital of Athens, Athens, Greece.

Abstract

Vx-001, an HLA-A*0201 restricted telomerase (TERT)-specific anti-tumor vaccine, is composed of the 9-mer cryptic TERT(572) peptide and its optimized variant TERT(572Y). We have previously shown that Vx-001 is non-toxic, highly immunogenic and in vaccinated NSCLC patients early specific immune response is associated with prolonged survival. The aim of the present study was to investigate the specific T-cell immune response against Vx-001. Fifty-five patients with chemo-resistant advanced solid tumors were vaccinated with TERT(572Y) (2 subcutaneous injections) followed by TERT(572) peptide (4 subcutaneous injections) every 3 weeks. Specific immune response was evaluated by IFN-γ and perforin ELISpot and intracellular cytokine staining assays. TERT-reactive T cells were detected in 27 (51%) out of 53 evaluable patients after the 2nd vaccination and in 22 (69%) out of 32 evaluable patients after the completion of 6 vaccinations. Immune responses developed irrespective of the stage of disease and disease status before vaccination. Patients with disease progression at study entry who developed a post-vaccination-induced immunological response had a significant overall survival benefit compared to the post-vaccination non-responders. The Vx-001 vaccine is a promising candidate for cancer immunotherapy since it can induce a TERT-specific T-cell immune response that is associated with prolonged survival.

PMID:
21858533
DOI:
10.1007/s00262-011-1093-4
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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