Amgenvirus-Vaccine Shrinks Melanoma Tumors








New studies have found that the Amgenvirus-vaccine has the potential to reduce melanoma tumors.

A new medication may help to shrink melanoma tumors

A new medication may help to shrink melanoma tumors

Drug maker Amgen Inc. has great news on its innovative melanoma drug, which uses a virus as a Trojan horse to infiltrate and destroy tumors. Amgen’s innovative melanoma treatment shrank far more tumors than standard treatment in a late-stage test. The experimental injected drug, dubbed T-VEC, uses a modified virus as a Trojan horse to penetrate tumors, rip cancer cells apart and make immune cells attack, too. It has shrank far more tumors than a standard treatment in a late-stage test. The trial injected drug made tumors shrink for six months in 16% of study participants. That compares with tumor shrinkage in just 2% of patients in a control group that received a standard treatment. The results, released late Tuesday, show there’s potential for similar vaccines other companies are developing. Amgen also says its interim analysis indicates the drug, referred to T-VEC for short, may help patients live longer. They will have more definitive details soon. This is very encouraging for similar vaccines other companies are developing. “These are the first (late-stage) results of this novel approach to cancer therapy,” Dr. Sean E. Harper, director of research and development at Amgen, said in a statement. “A huge unmet need exists in melanoma and we believe the innovative mechanism of action of talimogene laherparepvec may offer a promising approach for these patients.”

Shares of drugmaker Amgen Inc. climbed Wednesday on news that its innovative melanoma drug.

“These are the first (late-stage) results of this novel approach to cancer therapy,” Dr. Sean E. Harper, head of research and development at Amgen, said in a statement. “A high unmet need exists in melanoma and we believe the innovative mechanism of action of talimogene laherparepvec may offer a promising approach for these patients.”

The drug, which works in two complementary ways, combines a gene snippet meant to stimulate the body’s immune system with a modified version of the herpes simplex virus – the kind that causes mouth cold sores. TVEC is a treatment that leverages a patient’s own immune system. The virus is thought to potentiate local anti-tumor effects.

TVEC is a treatment that leverages a patient’s own immune system. It has a dual mechanism of action, utilizing an attenuated herpes simplex virus (HSV) and a GM-CSF cytokine to stimulate the immune system. The virus is thought to have strong local anti-tumor effects to enhance systemic effects. GM-CSF stimulates T cells to kill melanoma cells at sites not infected with the HSV virus.

Amgen obtained TVEC in March of 2011 when it acquired privately held BioVex in a deal worth up to US dollars of 1 billion. In July of 2011, the company terminated a Phase III trial testing TVEC in patients with head and neck cancer. The Phase III study for the treatment of malignant melanoma is ongoing.

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Written by Lisa Cramer

Lisa Cramer is a newbie writer that is on the verge of becoming a very talented journalist. Her passion for writing has always been kindred to her heart. But, her recent career change in the medical field has led her to us. And now finally she is pursuing her deepest passion of covering health news, and advancing as a professional journalist. She is ecstatic about being a part of NewHealthAlert.net and will make it her mission to provide readers on the site with “real facts” and deep insight into the latest breaking health news around the world. Contact Lisa at lisac@newhealthalert.net

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