10,000 Patients Tested With Personalized mRNA Cancer Immunotherapies by 2030

As of January 10, 2022, over 13 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered — including hundreds of millions of mRNA vaccines by companies like Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna. Following the surge in mRNA vaccine research for COVID-19, researchers are now seeking to apply their experience to cancer vaccines. Recently, BioNTech announced a strategic partnership with the government of the United Kingdom to provide up to 10,000 patients with personalized mRNA cancer immunotherapies by 2030.

“Our goal is to accelerate the development of immunotherapies and vaccines using technologies we have been researching for over 20 years,” says Prof. Ugur Sahin, CEO and cofounder of BioNTech, in a press release.

The collaboration will cover various cancer types and infectious diseases affecting collectively hundreds of millions of people worldwide. If successful, this collaboration has the potential to improve outcomes for patients and provide early access to our suite of cancer immunotherapies as well as to innovative vaccines against infectious diseases – in the U.K. and worldwide,” he adds.

You must be logged in to view this content.

BioNTech Doses First Patient in Herpes Vaccine Trial

 BioNtech (22UAy.DE) has dosed the first patient with its BNT163 herpes vaccine candidate designed to prevent genital lesions as part of a first-in-human Phase 1 clinical research study, the German vaccine maker said on Wednesday.

The vaccine candidate is meant to prevent HSV-2, the herpes simplex virus that causes genital herpes, and potentially HSV-1, which causes oral herpes and can lead to genital herpes.

It is the first result of the research collaboration established in 2018 between the University of Pennsylvania and BioNtech aimed at developing novel mRNA vaccine candidates for the prevention and treatment of various infectious diseases.

The World Health Organization estimates the number of people aged 15-49 suffering from HSV-2 infection at around 491 million.

BioNTech expects to enrol 100 people between ages 18 and 55 for its Phase 1 trial of the drug, the firm added.

Source: https://www.reuters.com/

Cancer Vaccine Available Before 2030

Vaccines that target cancer could be available before the end of the decade, according to the husband and wife team behind one of the most successful Covid vaccines of the pandemic. Uğur Şahin and Özlem Türeci, who co-founded BioNTech, the German firm that partnered with Pfizer to manufacture a revolutionary mRNA Covid vaccine, said they had made breakthroughs that fuelled their optimism for cancer vaccines in the coming years. Speaking on the BBC’s Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg, Prof Türeci described how the mRNA technology at the heart of BioNTech’s Covid vaccine could be repurposed so that it primed the immune system to attack cancer cells instead of invading coronaviruses.

Asked when cancer vaccines based on mRNA might be ready to use in patients, Prof Sahin said they could be available “before 2030”.

An mRNA Covid vaccine works by ferrying the genetic instructions for harmless spike proteins on the Covid virus into the body. The instructions are taken up by cells which churn out the spike protein. These proteins, or antigens, are then used as “wanted posters” – telling the immune system’s antibodies and other defences what to search for and attack. The same approach can be taken to prime the immune system to seek out and destroy cancer cells, said Türeci, BioNTech’s chief medical officer. Rather than carrying code that identifies viruses, the vaccine contains genetic instructions for cancer antigensproteins that stud the surfaces of tumour cells.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/

Pancreatic Cancer Vaccine

Pancreatic cancer is the deadliest of cancers, with few treatment options. Now, an mRNA vaccine treatment, called autogene cevumeran, that is tailored to each individual’s cancer has produced promising results in a small initial trial.

In the trial, 16 people were given the vaccine around nine weeks after having an operation to remove their tumours. In eight, the vaccine didn’t elicit an effective immune response and their cancers returned. But in the other eight, the vaccine resulted in a good response and they remained cancer-free 18 months later. The results were announced by the vaccine’s developer, BioNTech, on 5 June.

This is a very small initial trial. Larger and longer trials will be needed to confirm the result. The trial only involved people whose cancers were detected early enough that they could undergo an operation to remove tumours before they spread to other parts of the body. Only around 10 per cent of people are diagnosed at this stage, says Chris Macdonald, head of research at charity Pancreatic Cancer UK. In other words, even if larger trials confirm these initial results, it remains to be seen if this vaccine can help people with more advanced pancreatic cancer – though that is, of course, the hope.

The problem is that the symptoms of pancreatic cancer are vague, says Macdonald. By the time it is detected, 70 per cent of people are so ill that it is too late for any treatment.

Source: https://www.newscientist.com/

Emergency Use Authorization of the J&J Covid Vaccine is Imminent

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is getting a lot of people excited. Not only is it another potential option to protect more people from COVID-19, but their vaccine is only one dose, making it a lot easier to reach a broad swath of the population.

In Orange County, the fourth-highest county in the state for vaccine distribution, more than 82,000 initial doses have gone out. Across the sunshine state, more than 1.6 million Floridians have received at least their first dose with nearly 300,000 having completed their vaccine series. Nationwide, the U.S. is inching closer toward 30 million Americans having received at least one dose of the vaccine to protect them against COVID-19.

Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine isn’t approved just yet but it is expected to become  the third vaccine for roll out across the country. With just a single dose needed, health leaders say this could be a game changer.  Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine is only 66 percent effective compared to the 90 plus efficacy rate of both Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccine. However, health leaders stress that data is still promising. And Johnson & Johnson’s doses can remain stable for two years at -4 degree temperatures or at least three months when stored at 36 to 46 degree (8 degree  Celsius) temperatures.

Johnson & Johnson say they have product ready to ship out immediately pending approvals. They’re expected to file for emergency use authorization for their vaccine early February.

https://www.baynews9.com/