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A novel cancer immunotherapy vaccine based on new & unique surface molecules that Oxford researchers have discovered.

VTP-600: A novel cancer immunotherapy in collaboration with Ludwig Institute 

The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that there were 1.76 million deaths due to lung cancer in 2018. Lung cancer is the most common cancer in men and the third most common in women. Lung cancer deaths are an estimated 25% of all cancer deaths in the US and 20% of total cancer deaths in Japan and EU countries. Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) accounts for roughly 85% of all cases of lung cancer.

VTP-600 is a new therapeutic cancer vaccine entering a Phase I/IIa clinical trial funded by Cancer Research UK. VTP-600, developed by Oxford researchers and Vaccitech Oncology Limited, is based on highly-cancer specific surface molecules that are believed to be important cancer cell targets – called MAGE-A3 and NY-ESO-1. The cancer vaccine is designed to educate the immune system to identify these molecules and attack cancer cells.

NY-ESO-1 and MAGE-A3 antigens are found in a wide array of cancers, including lung, gastro-esophageal, melanoma and synovial sarcoma. In theory this approach could be personalised per patient, depending on their tumour’s antigen expression to optimize their immune response during therapy – and VTP-600 may have medical applications outside of lung cancers.

In combination with standard checkpoint blockade immunotherapy and chemotherapy, this vaccine will be trialled on patients with the aim of boosting treatment success. The Phase 1/2a clinical trial of this drug opened in 2021.

The trial will be open for recruitment at sites across the UK. If you are interested in learning more about this project, or enquiring about patient suitability, please see the CRUK website page for the study.