Ohio State study finds cancer vaccine to be safe and effective in animal models

A vaccine that inhibits growth of colon cancer cells has been proven safe and effective in animal models in a study led by Pravin T. P. Kaumaya, PhD, a professor of Obstetrics at The Ohio State College of Medicine, and a member of the Translational Therapeutics Research Program at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute.

The vaccine, PD1-Vaxx, activates T and B cells to “clear” the cancer cells and block signaling pathways that are crucial for tumor growth and maintenance, according to Dr. Kaumaya. The team found that the PD1-Vaxx was particularly effective when used in combination with another vaccine tested by his team in an earlier study, the HER-2 peptide vaccine, which targets two sites on the HER-2 receptor on colon cancer cells, “super-charging and specifically directing the immune system to target and kill cancer cells,” explains Dr. Kaumaya.

The study showed that PD1-Vaxx could outperform the standard anti-mouse PD-1 antibody (mAb 29F.1A12) in an animal model of HER-2 expressing colon carcinoma. Both the PD-1 and the combined vaccines were found to be safe, with no evidence of toxicity or autoimmunity.

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