The PEPvIII-KLH (CDX-110) vaccine in glioblastoma multiforme patients.
Conventional therapies for glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) fail to target tumor cells exclusively, resulting in non-specific toxicity. Immune targeting of tumor-specific mutations may allow for more precise eradication of neoplastic cells. EGFR variant III (EGFRvIII) is a tumor-specific mutation that is widely expressed in GBM and other neoplasms and its expression enhances tumorigenicity. This in-frame deletion mutation splits a codon, resulting in a novel glycine at the fusion junction producing a tumor-specific epitope target for cellular or humoral immunotherapy. We have previously shown that vaccination with a peptide that spans the EGFRvIII fusion junction (PEPvIII-KLH/CDX-110) is an efficacious immunotherapy in syngeneic murine models. In this review, we summarize our results in GBM patients targeting this mutation in multiple, multi-institutional Phase II immunotherapy trials. These trials demonstrated that a selected population of GBM patients who received vaccines targeting EGFRvIII had an unexpectedly long survival time. Further therapeutic strategies and potential pitfalls of using this approach are discussed.
Heimberger, AB; Sampson, JH
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