A paradigm-shift in cancer treatment
First generation cancer immunotherapies are paving the way for MaxiVAX’ personalized immunotherapy
Despite recent new cancer treatments, the sad fact remains that the vast majority of cancer patients with advanced or metastatic cancer still die from their disease within 5 years. Many tumours such as lung cancer, ovarian cancer, pancreatic cancer and head and neck cancers are often detected at a very advanced stage, adding a further challenge for an effective treatment.
Tumour cells that arise as a result of the onset of cancer are more or less tolerated by the patient's own immune system. This is due to the fact that the tumour cells are essentially the patient's own cells that are growing, dividing and spreading without control.
Cancer immunotherapy trains the patient's own immune system to recognize parts of the tumour cells as targets to be destroyed. As opposed to other anti-cancer therapies, this approach helps the patient to heal him- or herself in a more natural way.
The 1st generation immunotherapies are monoclonal antibodies that target one characterized component, an antigen, on the cancer cell membrane. A very recent commercial success has been the monoclonal antibody, Yervoy from Bristol Myers Squibbs against certain skin cancers. The drug was launched in 2011 and revenues reached $0.7 billion in its first full year of sales.
While antibodies represent an advance in immunotherapy, their efficacy is still limited because they only target one antigen on the tumour cell. The ultimate “immunogen” remains the entire cancer cell itself. It comprises the entire set of targets. This is a key basis for MaxiVAX’ novel immunotherapy.
Differentiation of MaxiVAX within the space of Immuno-Oncology.
MaxiVAX proposes an ACTIVE THERAPEUTIC IMMUNIZATION of patients against their own cancer cells, by triggering a protective immune response.
This natural process leads to a long term cure and does not simply extent the duration of life for the period of treatment.
Within companies that do propose VACCINATION against CANCER, MaxiVAX is entirely NOVEL and UNIQUE, because it combines :
a) The presentation of ALL tumor antigens of a given patient within the vaccine preparation, in the form of the entire cancer cell of the individual patient (and not simply a single epitope or antigen given to all patients).
b) The local delivery of a potent IMMUNE BOOSTER (GM-CSF), delivered at the site of vaccination in a sustained manner over 9 weeks. This unique (and essential) feature is achieved by a microcapsule that harbors (and protects) cells that were genetically engineered to secrete and release GM-CSF.
The combination of these two essential factors is indeed UNIQUE to MaxiVAX and essential to the effective triggering of a protective immune response against multiple types of cancers.