Recently, a molecule has been identified by scientist that promotes the fighting ability of our immune system when added to a cancer vaccine. The study has made an appearance in PNAS, claiming that Diprovocim (a molecule), when added to an existing cancer vaccine effectively, drew anti-cancer cells to the target site of cancer tumors. Experiments conducted on mice further suggest that this molecule addition can improve chances of recovery especially when drug therapy stops working.
According to a professor involved in the study, Dale Boger, the co-therapy showed a curative response in treating melanoma. The plus point is that this vaccine prepares the immune system for any returning tumors, hence decreasing the risk of cancer recurrence. Boger adds that this cancer vaccine acts just like the other vaccines that prepare the immune system to ward off external pathogens, should they arrive.
Diprovocim is used as an adjuvant which is a molecule that enhances a vaccine’s capability to fuel up the immune response in the body. This molecule is modifiable and can be prepared easily in the lab.
Mice with aggressive melanoma were divided into three groups who were given anti-cancer therapy anti-PD-L1. Eight mice were injected with the cancer vaccine alone, another eight with Diprovocim along with the cancer vaccine and another eight with cancer vaccine plus alum (alternative adjuvant). A 100% rate of survival was seen in mice injected with Diprovocim plus cancer vaccine over 54 days. 25% survival rate was observed in the cases of alum plus cancer vaccine and a zero percent survival rate in the cases of cancer vaccine alone.
Boger calls the result to be exciting, given how the vaccine worked along with anti-PD-L1 anti-cancer therapy. Further experiments were conducted, all of which showed Diprovocim boosting the cancer-fighting ability of the vaccine. It successfully stimulated the immune system to produce tumor-infiltrating leukocyte which enhanced the vaccine’s working.