Vaccibody, Nektar begin customized cancer vaccine trial

By The Science Advisory Board staff writers

August 12, 2020 -- Vaccibody and Nektar Therapeutics have started a phase I/IIA trial for a personalized cancer DNA vaccine for patients with advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck.

Patients are receiving a combination of Nektar's CD122-preferential interleukin-2 (IL-2) pathway agonist bempegaldesleukin (bempeg) and Vaccibody's personalized neoantigen cancer vaccine Vb10.Neo. Adding bempeg to Vb10.Neo is intended to drive maximal expansion of vaccine-induced neoantigen-specific T cells for the treatment of cancer, according to the companies.

The vaccine is designed to specifically activate the patient's immune system to tumor-specific antigens while bempeg will expand and proliferate tumor antigen specific T cells in the periphery and the tumor microenvironment.

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