Everyone at Hope was so nice and compassionate. Strangers I met in the lobby consoled me. You knew everyone who stepped through Hope's doors loved animals.
Ilona and Bill
Pilot Evaluation of Cancer Stem Cell Vaccine in Dogs with Melanoma
Cancer stem cells (CSC) are now considered a primary driver of tumor recurrence following chemotherapy or radiation therapy, as well as a driver of cancer spread. There currently are no therapeutics that can selectively target CSC for elimination. This study is designed to target CSC for immune elimination using properly designed stem cell vaccines. Preliminary work in mouse models has shown favorable responses.
Importantly, immunization with CSC vaccines prepared from allogeneic (from other animals) tumor cell lines also induces an anti-tumor immune response, indicating these vaccines can be successfully prepared from other patients tumors. Moreover, CSC vaccines prepared from completely unrelated tumors histologically also generate anti-tumor immunity, suggesting that CSC vaccines may in some sense be considered “universal” tumor vaccines.
This study is intended to provide an early proof-of-principal evaluation of the new stem cell vaccine technology in dogs with melanoma and its ability to induce anti-tumor immunity.
- Dogs with histologically diagnosed oral melanoma (stage II-III) that have been clinically staged (bloodwork, urinalysis, chest radiographs,).
- Direct measurement of the tumor is needed (stage II means tumor ≥ 2 cm).
- The tumor is accessible to fine needle aspiration.
- No concurrently immunosuppressive medication or myelosuppressive chemotherapy during the 3-month trial.
Dogs enrolled in the study will receive a series of 8 immunizations over a 3-month period (4 weekly immunizations, followed by 4 bimonthly immunizations). The vaccines will be administered under the skin over the flank (2 sites). Tumors are measured and photographed on an every other week basis using digital calipers. For dogs that experience an objective tumor response, the vaccine will be made available for 3 additional monthly administrations (total of 6 months of treatment). Animals that develop a progressive disease (increase in tumor volume by more than 50%), develop tumor-related adverse events or developed any serious medical illnesses will be removed from the study.
Partial funding is available to help cover costs associated with study screening and examinations. Study patients will receive the study vaccine at no cost and costs associated with the shipment of blood samples to the Tumor Immunology Laboratory will be covered by the sponsor.
Primary Investigators at HopeVS: Dr. Craig Clifford, Dr. Christine Mullin, Dr. Kate Vickery,
For more information please contact us: