A new vaccine targeting the deadly form of brain cancer glioblastoma multiforme is showing promise in clinical studies.
The experimental vaccine code-named ICT-107 has provided a significant increase in survival in patients with brain cancer glioblastoma multiforme who received the vaccine.
Newly diagnosed patients who received the vaccine in addition to the standard of care of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy demonstrated a one year overall survival of 100 percent and a two year survival of 80 percent.
Normally, only 61.1 percent of brain cancer glioblastoma multiforme patients survive one-year and a mere 26.5 percent for two years based on the standard of care alone.
The 12-month disease-free survival from the time of surgery was 75 percent with ICT-107, compared with the usual 26.9 percent, and the 18-month disease-free survival with ICT-107 was 49.2 percent, compared with 18.4 percent historically.
The progression-free survival of 17.7 months after surgery compared especially favorably with of 6.9 months observed with the standard treatment of brain cancer glioblastoma multiforme.
Seven of the 16 patients (44 percent) who participated in the study continue to live with no disease progression with an average time of over 29 months, according to ImmunoCellular Therapeutics which has developed the vaccine.
Safety data for ICT-107 also compared favorably to current treatments: no serious adverse events were reported and minor side effects were limited to fatigue, skin rash and pruritis.
“These new data further establish ICT-107 as a promising potential treatment for glioblastoma, a disease for which there are currently few and limited treatment options,” stated Surasak Phuphanich, M.D., Director of the Neuro-Oncology Program at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
ImmunoCellular recently completed a phase I trial of ICT-107. The Company is planning to initiate a multicenter phase II study in the second half of 2010.
In May 2010, ImmunoCellular Therapeutics filed an orphan drug application with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for ICT-107.
ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd is a Los Angeles-based clinical-stage company that is developing immune-based therapies for the treatment of brain and other cancers.
IMUC has entered into a research and license option deal with the Roche Group for one of the Company’s monoclonal antibody product candidates for the diagnosis and treatment of ovarian cancer and multiple myeloma.
IMUC is in pre-clinical development of another monoclonal antibody product candidate for the treatment of small cell lung cancer and pancreatic cancer, and is also evaluating its platform technology for monoclonal antibody discovery to target cancer stem cells.
Glioma (cancer of the glial cells) is the most common type of malignant primary brain tumour (a tumour that originates in the brain).
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common and most malignant of the glial tumors.
Glioblastomas primarily affect adults, and they are located preferentially in the cerebral hemispheres.
Much less commonly, glioblastoma multiforme can affect the brainstem (especially in children) and the spinal cord.
Glioblastomas can be classified as primary or secondary. Primary glioblastoma multiforme accounts for the vast majority of cases (60%) in adults older than 50 years.
These tumors manifest without clinical or histopathologic evidence of a preexisting, less-malignant precursor lesion), presenting after a short clinical history, usually less than 3 months.
Secondary glioblastoma multiformes (40%) typically develop in younger patients of less than 45 years.
The time required for this progression varies considerably, ranging from less than 1 year to more than 10 years, with a mean interval of 4-5 years.
Patients treated with surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, have a median survival of approximately 12 months, with fewer than 25% of patients surviving up to 2 years and fewer than 10% of patients surviving up to 5 years.