Navigation Links
Pitt vaccine to prevent colon cancer being tested in patients
Date:3/19/2009

PITTSBURGH, March 19 Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have begun testing a vaccine that might be able to prevent colon cancer in people at high risk for developing the disease. If shown to be effective, it might spare patients the risk and inconvenience of repeated invasive surveillance tests, such as colonoscopy, that are now necessary to spot and remove precancerous polyps.

Colon cancer takes years to develop and typically starts with a polyp, which is a benign but abnormal growth in the intestinal lining, explained principal investigator Robert E. Schoen, M.D., M.P.H., professor of medicine and epidemiology at the University of Pittsburgh. Polyps that could become cancerous are called adenomas.

In a novel approach for cancer prevention, the Pitt vaccine is directed against an abnormal variant of a self-made cell protein called MUC1, which is altered and produced in excess in advanced adenomas and cancer. Vaccines currently in use to prevent cancer work via a different mechanism, specifically by blocking infection with viruses that are linked with cancer. For example, Gardasil protects against human papilloma virus associated with cervical cancer and hepatitis B vaccine protects against liver cancer.

"By stimulating an immune response against the MUC1 protein in these precancerous growths, we may be able to draw the immune system's fire to attack and destroy the abnormal cells," Dr. Schoen said. "That might not only prevent progression to cancer, but even polyp recurrence."

According to co-investigator Olivera Finn, Ph.D., professor and chair of the Department of Immunology at Pitt's School of Medicine, MUC1 vaccines have been tested for safety and immunogenicity in patients with late-stage colon cancer and pancreatic cancer.

"Patients were able to generate an immune response despite their cancer-weakened immune systems," she noted. "Patients with advanced adenomas are otherwise healthy and so they would be expected to generate a stronger immune response. That may be able to stop precancerous lesions from transforming into malignant tumors."

About a dozen people have received the experimental vaccine so far, and the researchers intend to enroll another 50 or so into the study. Participants must be between 40 and 70 years old and have a history of developing adenomas that are deemed advanced, meaning they are greater than or equal to 1 centimeter in size, are typed as villous or tubulovillous, or contain severely dysplastic, or abnormal, cells. After an initial dose of vaccine, the participants will get shots again two and 10 weeks later. Blood samples will be drawn to measure immune response at those time points as well as 12 weeks, 28 weeks and one year later.

People who develop advanced adenomas undergo regular surveillance with colonoscopy so that recurrent polyps, which are common, can be removed before matters get worse, Dr. Schoen said.

"Immunotherapy might be a good alternative to colonoscopy because it is noninvasive and nontoxic," he noted. "And, it could provide long-term protection."

Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death in the United States. In 2008, the American Cancer Society estimated that there were more than 108,000 new cases of colon cancer, nearly 41,000 cases of rectal cancer, and almost 50,000 deaths due to both diseases.


'/>"/>

Contact: Anita Srikameswaran
SrikamAV@upmc.edu
412-647-3555
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. DNA vaccine against multiple sclerosis appears safe, potentially beneficial
2. HPV vaccine does not appear to be effective for treating pre-existing HPV infection
3. Vaccine Stops Alzheimers Brain Tangles
4. Human Papilloma Virus vaccines may decrease chances of oral cancer
5. U.S. Teens Fall Short on Vaccine Coverage
6. Nasal Anthrax Vaccine Proves Effective in Animal Study
7. Hot ice, measuring depression, perfect invisibility and flu vaccine incentives
8. Bioniche Receives $2 Million Government Grant For Market Development Related to its E. coli O157:H7 Cattle Vaccine
9. Iomai Patch-Based Vaccine Cut Rate of Travelers Diarrhea by 75 Percent in Phase 2 Field Study
10. FDA approves expanded label for FluMist (influenza virus vaccine live, intranasal) to include childr
11. MedImmune Licenses Reverse Genetics Technology to GlaxoSmithKline for Use in Influenza Vaccine Development and Production
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:8/18/2017)... ... August 18, 2017 , ... More than 20,000 pairs of shoes made their ... to an ambitious venture that conjoined the passions of an NBA star, a Liberty ... Liberty community. These shoes will save lives from the rampant infections transmitted through the ...
(Date:8/18/2017)... ... August 18, 2017 , ... ... a highly specialized asset-light logistics provider of complex transport solutions for mission-critical ... to purchase Unitrans International Corporation, a division of Roadrunner Transportation Systems, Inc. ...
(Date:8/18/2017)... ... August 18, 2017 , ... ... of “Vision & Hearing,” advocating for active, healthy lifestyles and highlighting the importance ... for individuals with hearing impairments and shares the latest innovations in hearing aid ...
(Date:8/18/2017)... ... August 18, 2017 , ... ... handheld devices. Through an educational webinar, they will present the line of epMotion ... to learn how easy you can automate everyday pipetting tasks. , Ideal for ...
(Date:8/18/2017)... ... August 18, 2017 , ... Hernandez Insurance ... to communities throughout the greater DC region, is inaugurating a “New Leash On ... local animals and training them to be companions for veterans in need. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:8/7/2017)... 7, 2017 Diplomat Pharmacy, Inc. (NYSE: ... as president, effective Aug. 7, 2017. ... to pursue other interests and will serve as president emeritus ... has served us in multiple leadership roles since he joined ... 2015 and has provided decisive, strategic leadership which continues to ...
(Date:8/4/2017)... CINCINNATI , Aug. 3, 2017  Agragen, ... science company active in the biopharmaceutical, nutraceutical, and ... its development of its lead drug candidates, AGR131.  ... a proinflammatory cytokine from the blood of patients ... psoriasis, and inflammatory bowel disease. ...
(Date:8/2/2017)... Ore. , Aug. 2, 2017  Life Flight Network ... Agreement. The agreement improves patient care and operational efficiency for ... Springfield , Cottage Grove , ... level medical transportation. PeaceHealth and Life Flight Network work collaboratively ... available during transport, or when a time sensitive emergency exists. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: