Tags: brain | cancer | immunotherapy | vaccine

Dad's Brain Cancer Clears in Immunotherapy Vaccine Trial

Dad's Brain Cancer Clears in Immunotherapy Vaccine Trial
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By    |   Wednesday, 20 June 2018 01:51 PM

A dad's brain cancer appeared be cleared by an immunotherapy vaccine trial at the Cleveland Clinic, but some doctors are calling the announcement "misleading," according to the website Health News Review.

The renowned health facility released the statement last week, highlighting the treatment of patient Jeff Tabor, 53, of Pittsburgh, suffering from glioblastoma, the most aggressive form of brain cancer.

Glioblastoma is connected with the deaths of U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy and Beau Biden, the son of former vice president Joe Biden, according to Newsweek. U.S. Sen. John McCain is currently fighting the disease.

In Tabor's case, the Cleveland Clinic said doctors used glioblastoma treatments of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation with ongoing doses of SurVaxM, a "first-of-its-kind" immunotherapy that has been engineered to stimulate patients' immune response to control tumor growth and recurrence.

"While we are still in the relatively early phases of testing this vaccine, we are seeing some very promising results which give us a lot of hope for this patient population," Cleveland Clinic neuro-oncologist Manmeet Ahluwalia, one of the principal investigators in a multi-center phase II study of the new treatment, said in the statement.

"In Jeff’s case, he has gone almost 18 months from his diagnosis, and – on his recent MRI scans — we do not see any evidence of cancer growing going back in his brain."

The claim, though, was meet with skepticism from some physicians who charged that there was no way to tell how much of the Tabor's improvement came from the new therapy and traditional methods, noted Health News Review.

Dr. Vinay Prasad, a hematologist-oncologist and assistant professor of medicine at the Oregon Health and Sciences University, was one who questioned the announcement.

The Cleveland Clinic announcement said that preliminary results of the first 55 patients in the SurVaxM trial reveal a 12-month overall survival rate of 90.9 percent from diagnosis and 70.8 percent from first immunization, a vast improvement over traditional treatment alone.

WKBW-TV reported that 61 percent of patients survive after the first 12 months of treatment in a historical analysis of patients treated with standard therapy alone. The television station reported that 13 of 63 patients did not improve a year or longer into their participation in the study that included Tabor.

Fox News wrote that researchers are now planning a randomized, prospective trial of the vaccine in glioblastoma patients. Tabor, though, is happy with his treatment and results.

"If you would have told me a year ago that I would feel this great today, I wouldn't have believed you," Tabor said in the Cleveland Clinic statement. "Every day has been better than the previous day."

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A dad's brain cancer appeared be cleared by an immunotherapy vaccine trial at the Cleveland Clinic, but some doctors are calling the announcement "misleading," according to the website Health News Review.
brain, cancer, immunotherapy, vaccine
492
2018-51-20
Wednesday, 20 June 2018 01:51 PM
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