New Discoveries and Honors in Cancer Research

Read the latest cancer research and recognition from the members of the Damon Runyon scientific circle.
August 6, 2013
Personalized tumor vaccine boosts immune response in leukemia patients

Catherine J. Wu, MD (Damon Runyon Clinical Investigator ‘07-‘12) and colleagues at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, reported the success of a new strategy to boost leukemia patients’ immune systems after transplant. In a phase I clinical study, patients with advanced chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) were given a “personalized” tumor vaccine composed of their own inactivated leukemia cells combined with an immune stimulant called GM-CSF. The vaccine strengthened the immune system’s ability to attack the cancer, resulting in remission in 72 percent of patients treated. These promising results were published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.