Scancell Holdings Plc, (AIM: SCLP), the developer of therapeutic cancer vaccines, announces that a treatment utilising a DNA vaccine based on its ImmunoBody® technology, in combination with ImmuneRegen BioSciences, Inc.®’s lead compound, Homspera®, has significantly improved the immune response of the vaccine in an animal model. Follow-up studies are currently being performed to optimize the effects of Homspera in enhancing the next generation of Scancell’s cancer vaccines.
Scancell recently announced the commencement of a Phase I clinical trial utilizing its SCIB1 product being developed for the treatment of melanoma. SCIB1 is a novel DNA vaccine being developed using Scancell’s patented ImmunoBody® technology. ImmunoBody® vaccines generate the high-avidity T-cells that kill cancer cells, which may overcome the current limitations of most cancer vaccines. A unique advantage of Scancell’s Immunobody® technology is that it specifically targets dendritic cells, leading to a significant enhancement of the immune response.
ImmuneRegen’s Homspera has previously been found to improve the efficacy of a melanoma cancer vaccine in mice, resulting in persistent and specific immune responses associated with inhibition of melanoma tumor growth. Additionally, previous studies have demonstrated efficacy of Homspera in enhancing immune responses to infectious disease vaccines, such as influenza. Both applications are being aggressively developed by ImmuneRegen in combination with significant academic and industry partners.
Professor Lindy Durrant, Chief Executive Officer of Scancell, commented:
“I am pleased with the results achieved by this collaboration to date and look forward to continuing to work with ImmuneRegen as we progress with follow-up studies.”
Hal Siegel Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of ImmuneRegen, commented:
“We are pleased to see if we can positively augment immune responses elicited by Scancell’s ImmunoBody® vaccines. Based on our previous demonstration of enhanced dendritic cell responses to TRP2-encoding DNA vaccine following Homspera exposure, Scancell’s ImmunoBody® vaccine technology presents a very desirable developmental opportunity. We are very happy with our ongoing relationship and recognize that ongoing studies could potentially benefit both companies.”
ImmuneRegen BioSciences, Inc.® is a wholly owned subsidiary of IR
BioSciences Holdings, Inc. (OTC BB:IRBS.OB)
For further information contact:
Scancell Holdings Plc - Professor Lindy Durrant
Hansard Communications - John Bick/Kirsty Corcoran
Zeus Capital - Nominated Adviser/Joint Broker - Ross Andrews/Tom Rowley
Matrix Corporate Capital LLP - Joint Broker - Robert Naylor/Stephen Waterman
Scancell is developing novel therapeutic vaccines for the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases based on its groundbreaking ImmunoBody® technology platform. Scancell’s first cancer vaccine SCIB1 is being developed for the treatment of melanoma and has recently entered clinical trials.
Treating cancer by vaccination allows small non-toxic doses of a vaccine to be administered to a patient, stimulating an immune response. Effective cancer vaccines need to target dendritic cells to stimulate both parts of the cellular immune system; the helper cell system where inflammation is stimulated at the tumour site; and the cytotoxic T-lymphocyte or CTL response where immune system cells are primed to recognise and kill specific cells.
A limitation of many cancer vaccines currently in development is that they cannot specifically target dendritic cells in vivo. Several groups have demonstrated successful vaccination by growing dendritic cells ex vivo, pulsing them with tumour antigens and re-infusing them. However, this procedure is patient specific, time consuming and expensive. Scancell has developed its breakthrough patent protected ImmunoBody® technology to overcome these limitations.
An ImmunoBody® is a human antibody or fusion protein engineered to express helper cell and CTL epitopes from tumour antigens over-expressed by cancer cells. Antibodies are ideal vectors for carrying T cell epitopes from tumour antigens as they have long half-lives and can effectively target dendritic cells via their Fc receptors, allowing efficient stimulation of both helper and CTL responses.
The Immunobody® technology can be adapted to provide the basis for treating any tumour type and may also be of potential utility in the development of vaccines against hepatitis, HIV and other chronic infectious diseases.
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