Research press release



Cancer: Personalized mRNA vaccines show promise in pancreatic cancer



Vinod Balachandranらは、第I相臨床試験において、膵管腺がん患者16人に対するアジュバント療法として、autogene cevumeran(個別化mRNAワクチンの一種)を投与し、化学療法と免疫療法を併用した。その結果、患者の50%で、強いT細胞応答が観察され、このワクチンが免疫応答の改善を誘導することが示された。また、18カ月間の経過観察の後、患者において強い免疫応答が観察されることと再発するまでの期間が長期化したことが相関していた。これに対して、ワクチンに応答しなかった患者は、最初の評価から13.4カ月後(中央値)に再発した。


A personalized mRNA vaccine induces a substantial immune response and potentially delays relapse in patients with a form of pancreatic cancer called pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), when used in conjunction with other treatments, reports a study published in Nature.

PDAC is the third largest cause of cancer death in the United States and has poor survival rates, which have remained at 12% for the past 60 years. A combination of surgical and medicinal therapies can delay recurrence, but they have poor rates of success. Recent literature has suggested that most PDACs harbour increased levels of neoantigens, which are cell-surface proteins that can emerge on the surface of tumours following certain types of DNA mutations. These proteins can be targeted by personalized vaccine therapies with the aim of boosting T cell activity and improving outcomes.

In a phase I clinical trial, Vinod Balachandran and colleagues administered a personalized mRNA vaccine called adjuvant autogene cevumeran in combination with chemotherapy and immunotherapy in 16 patients with PDAC. They observed substantial T cell responses in 50% of patients, indicating that the vaccine can induce an improved immune response. After an 18-month follow-up, the elevated immune responses in patients correlated with longer times to relapse, whereas patients that showed no response to the vaccine experienced progression at a median of 13.4 months after the initial assessment.

These results demonstrate the potential of individualized mRNA vaccines in treating PDAC, as well as providing evidence of their general effectiveness as a therapeutic tool in treating disease. The authors note that despite the limited sample size, these early results indicate that larger studies of such vaccines for PDAC are warranted.

doi: 10.1038/s41586-023-06063-y

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