‘Cancer Vaccine’ Eliminates Tumors in Mice

By Stanford Medicine News Center. Activating T cells in tumors eliminated even distant metastases in mice, Stanford researchers found. Lymphoma patients are being recruited to test the technique in a clinical trial.

Injecting minute amounts of two immune-stimulating agents directly into solid tumors in mice can eliminate all traces of cancer in the animals, including distant, untreated metastases, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

The approach works for many different types of cancers, including those that arise spontaneously, the study found.

The researchers believe the local application of very small amounts of the agents could serve as a rapid and relatively inexpensive cancer therapy that is unlikely to cause the adverse side effects often seen with bodywide immune stimulation.

“When we use these two agents together, we see the elimination of tumors all over the body,” said Ronald Levy, MD, professor of oncology. “This approach bypasses the need to identify tumor-specific immune targets and doesn’t require wholesale activation of the immune system or customization of a patient’s immune cells.” (Read more from “Cancer Vaccine Eliminates Tumors in Mice” HERE)


Injection Helps the Immune System Obliterate Tumors, at Least in Mice

By Mitch Leslie. Our immune cells can destroy tumors, but sometimes they need a kick in the pants to do the job. A study in mice describes a new way to incite these attacks by injecting an immune-stimulating mixture directly into tumors. The shots trigger the animals’ immune system to eliminate not only the injected tumors, but also other tumors in their bodies.

“This is a very important study,” says immunologist Keith Knutson of the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, who wasn’t connected to the research. “It provides a good pretext for going into humans.”

To bring the wrath of the immune system down on tumors, researchers have tried shooting them up with a variety of molecules and viruses. So far, however, almost every candidate they’ve tested hasn’t worked in people . . .

The big question is whether the approach works in people, as most rodent cancer therapies don’t translate to humans. Levy and his colleagues are about to find out. They are launching a clinical trial to evaluate the safety of their approach and gauge its effectiveness in patients with lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system. (Read more from “Injection Helps the Immune System Obliterate Tumors, at Least in Mice” HERE)

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