Navigation Links
Novel prostate cancer vaccine taking aim at cancer cell 'sweet spot'
Date:1/8/2009

Molecules of sugar sitting on the surface of cancer cells are keys to the development of a new vaccine aimed at both treating and stopping the spread of certain types of cancers called carcinomas, which include prostate, breast, ovarian and lung, among others. Armed with a new two-year grant for $600,000 from the Gateway for Cancer Research, an Illinois-based philanthropic foundation, immunologist Alessandra Franco, M.D., Ph.D., and her co-workers at the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego are hoping to develop a low-cost immunotherapy for prostate carcinoma that may also have use against a variety of other carcinomas as well.

Franco, adjunct assistant professor of pediatrics at the UC San Diego School of Medicine, and her co-workers have spent the last decade proving that the immune system's destructive, or "killer," T-cells can recognize sugars on tumor cell surfaces. Her laboratory pioneered and developed the notion that conventional T-cells recognize not only peptides, or pieces of proteins, but also sugars, specifically small carbohydrates called tumor-associated carbohydrate antigens (TACA) expressed on carcinoma cell surfaces. Ideally, this recognition enables the T-cell to attach to and kill the cancer cell.

The researchers have designed "glycopeptides," compounds in which sugars are linked to peptides that are recognized by T-cells. When given as part of a vaccine therapy, these glycopeptides rouse immune system T-cells into recognizing TACA on tumor cell surfaces, attacking and killing the cancer cells. Her research team has already shown that both normal mice and mice with tumors that were vaccinated could successfully generate carbohydrate-specific T-cells that could kill tumors expressing the same carbohydrate molecule.

Cancer vaccines have had a mixed record of success at best. Most immunotherapies have focused on revving up immune system antibodies to recognize proteins on tumor cells.

"A limitation with current immunotherapies is that every tumor expresses different protein antigens, which all need to be characterized," she explained. "It is difficult for the immune system to discriminate, to tell that cancer cells are 'non-self' and should be destroyed. What's nice about T-cells recognizing sugars and why it's so important in cancer is because the same molecules are uniquely expressed in a large variety of cancers." A cell that becomes cancerous begins making a variety of sugar molecules that are not expressed in normal adult cells, making this strategy potentially useful for wide-ranging treatments of different tumors. Her team is targeting a sugar that is expressed on all carcinomas, a type of cancer that begins in epithelial cells.

Studies in the first year of the grant are focusing on gathering further laboratory and preclinical data to show the vaccine's effectiveness. Franco is hoping to begin a clinical trial in the second year of the grant to test the vaccine on prostate cancer patients who have already had treatment but who are at extremely high risk for relapse. She sees the vaccine as being used to help prevent the spread of cancer (metastatic disease), and perhaps even in preventing cancer in healthy people.

"The beauty of this approach is that the same vaccine may prevent metastasis," she said, noting that tumor cells can use sugar or carbohydrate antigens to spread. "If ultimately proven successful, this could be used in a first attempt to try to address vaccination on a large scale to prevent cancer."

The same type of vaccine can potentially be used for breast, lung, liver, ovary and other carcinomas, Franco said. "If we can show that this system works in humans, we think that it can address a variety of tumors with the same sugar compounds." The vaccine's relatively simple formulation, stability and low production cost could make it ideal for use in developing countries, she added.


'/>"/>

Contact: Steve Benowitz
sbenowitz@ucsd.edu
619-543-6163
University of California - San Diego
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Novel 3-D cell culture model shows selective tumour uptake of nanoparticles
2. Novel virus detection identifies new viruses in study of respiratory infections and asthma attacks
3. Researchers uncover novel mechanism that balances the sizes of functional areas in the brain
4. Novel Cooling Therapy May Have Aided Injured Football Player
5. ECLIPSE data on effects of Otsukas investigational novel treatment, Tolvaptan
6. SNM seeks novel approaches to molecular imaging to showcase at annual meeting
7. GrantAdler Shipping Novel Implantable Vascular Access Port
8. SNM seeks novel approaches to molecular imaging to showcase at annual meeting
9. Novel strategy under study for aggressive leukemia
10. ISTO Technologies Receives 510(k) Clearance for a Novel Bone Graft Substitute and Bone Graft Extender
11. 454 Sequencing(TM): Science Paper Describes a Novel, Highly Efficient Method of Sequencing Ancient DNA; Sequences the Mitochondria of 10 Individual Mammoths to Prove It
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Catalent Pharma Solutions, the leading global provider ... global clinical supply services, today announced two key appointments and the opening of ... strategic growth plans in the Asia Pacific region. , Howard Kim has joined ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Memorial Day Weekend marks the unofficial start of summer and ... to make sure your family and vehicle are ready to hit the road this ... 439 deaths and an additional 50,500 serious injuries from motor vehicle crashes during the ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... North Cypress Medical ... at Blackhorse Golf Club in Cypress. With the help of community partners, the event ... empowers, and renews hope for wounded service members and their families through health, wellness, ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... Eugene ... Doc! Along with his wonderful accolades and stellar patient reviews, Dr. Batelli continues ... Batelli! , Dr. Eugene Batelli is a highly trained Podiatric Surgeon who specializes ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... Pass, OR (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... ... of Bio-Logic Aqua® Research Water Life Science® and international water advocate, was honored by ... of the women in ancient Egypt who knelt on the banks of the Nile ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/24/2016)... Nev. , May 24, 2016  Diana Russell ... "eats" her organs from the inside out.  This disease ... completely dependent on her children and grandchildren to leave ... her wheelchair, Diana,s family cannot haul the wheelchair.  So ... in the car, and Diana is left to wait ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... The innovator of COMBO ... s first dual therapy stent, introduces catheters for ... OrbusNeich, a global company specializing in the provision of ... products to treat peripheral artery disease. The JADE™ and ... for lower limb and arteriovenous (AV) fistula intervention. ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... May 24, 2016 Een app ... zodat zij collectief patiënten kunnen behandelen, hun kennis kunnen ... idee achter de nieuwe en revolutionaire MDLinking App, ontwikkeld ... Nederlandse vaatchirurg dr. Hans Flu en oncologisch chirurg dr. ... inmiddels beschikbaar is, wordt op dinsdag 24 mei officieel ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: