By Ashwin, UK Correspondent, [RxPG] A recent clinical trial of the NY-ESO1/ISCOMATRIXTM vaccine conducted by the Cancer Vaccine Collaborative group at The Austin Health in Melbourne, Australia, has shown that the vaccine successfully induces a comprehensive immune response and suggests that the vaccine may prevent or delay melanoma recurrence in treated patients.
A team of researchers, including lead authors Ian D. Davis, Weisan Chen, and Jonathan Cebon, published the study in the July 20, 2004, issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. The vaccine, which was composed of the cancer-testis antigen NY-ESO-1 and ISCOMATRIXTM (an adjuvant that enhances the immune system response to the antigen), was administered to cancer patients after surgical removal of their tumors. It was observed that out of the 19 patients who received the vaccine, most with melanoma, 14 were cancer-free two years later.
This phase I clinical trial received much press attention, garnering coverage in several prestigious media outlets including leading Australian newspapers, The Age and the Sydney Morning Herald, the UKs The London Times, and in the news section of Nature. A larger Phase II clinical trial that will specifically test for the vaccines ability to prevent or delay recurrence is now under development.