Promising results from RNA vaccine in melanoma
August 2017

MAINZ, Germany—July saw biotechnology company BioNTech AG share Phase 1 trial results for IVAC MUTANOME, an individualized RNA vaccine based on patient-specific mutations. The vaccine was found to induce strong immunogenicity and antitumor activity in high-risk, late-stage melanoma patients. In addition, most patients demonstrated extended progression-free survival compared to historical controls. The vaccine boosted immunity against several tumor antigens in all patients, and eight were still tumor-free at 23 months, though five had tumor relapses before beginning neo-epitope vaccination. Two of those saw objective responses after neo-epitope vaccination, and one had a complete response after vaccination and anti-PD-1 therapy.
“Each patient developed immune responses against multiple vaccine targets. This suggests that in principle, it may be possible to train a patient’s immune system to help fight their cancer across a wide array of tumor types,” said Ugur Sahin, Founder and CEO of BioNTech.

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