Phase 1 Trial of Allogeneic Gene-Modified Tumor Cell Vaccine RCC-26/CD80/IL-2 in Patients with Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma

Department of Urology, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, 81377 Munich, Germany.
Human gene therapy (Impact Factor: 3.76). 09/2009; 21(3):285-97. DOI: 10.1089/hum.2008.192
Source: PubMed


Preclinical studies showed that the allogeneic tumor cell line RCC-26 displayed natural immunogenic potential that was enhanced through expression of CD80 costimulatory molecules and secretion of interleukin-2. Here we report the study of RCC-26/CD80/IL-2 cells in a phase 1 vaccine trial of renal cell carcinoma patients with metastatic disease (mRCC). Fifteen patients of the HLA-A*0201 allotype, with at least one metastatic lesion, were included. Irradiated vaccine cells were applied in increasing doses of 2.5, 10, and 40 x 10(6) cells over 22 weeks. Primary study parameters included safety and toxicity. Sequential blood samples were analyzed by interferon-gamma enzyme-linked immunospot assays to detect tumor antigen-associated (TAA) effector cells. The vaccine was well tolerated and the designated vaccination course was completed in 9 of 15 patients. Neither vaccine-induced autoimmunity nor systemic side effects were observed. Delayed-type hypersensitivity skin reactions were detected in 11 of 12 evaluated patients and were particularly strong in patients with prolonged survival. In parallel, vaccine-induced immune responses against vaccine or overexpressed TAA were detected in 9 of 12 evaluated patients. No tumor regressions occurred according to RECIST (Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors) criteria; however, median time to progression was 5.3 months and median survival was 15.6 months, indicating substantial disease stabilization. We conclude that vaccine use was safe and feasible in mRCC. Clinical benefits were limited in these patients with advanced disease; however, immune monitoring revealed vaccine-induced responses against multiple TAAs in the majority of study participants. These results suggest that this vaccine could be useful in combination therapies and/or minimal residual disease.

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