News | September 10, 2007

Vaccine Based on Listeria Aims to Stop Breast Cancer

September 11, 2007 — Researchers continue to search for a treatment to eradicate cancer, one of mankind's greatest afflictions and although a "cure" remains elusive, a vaccine to treat and prevent it may just be on the horizon.

Yvonne Paterson, Ph.D., a scientist who is also a breast cancer survivor, and her team of researchers appear to have taken a giant step forward by developing a series of cancer-fighting vaccines that appear to be able to stop and even reverse cancer growth.

Central to this discovery is the microbe Listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium found in milk, cheese and other dairy products. This common microorganism apparently aids in fighting cancer by activating many simultaneous mechanisms of immunity, including the body's own killer cells creating a strong immune response to the presence of cancer cells.

In scientific studies published in peer reviewed journals this year, Dr. Paterson, Professor of Microbiology at the University of Pennsylvania and scientific director at Advaxis, presented evidence of the cancer-fighting properties of live modified Listeria cancer vaccines. These vaccines successfully eradicated several types of rapidly growing cancers in mice.

When Listeria is introduced in the body, it has an extremely powerful effect, essentially, the Listeria in the vaccine harness the power of the immune system against the microbe, then proceed to direct it to successfully attack cancer cells. The vaccines teach the immune system to mount a specialized, targeted response that is lethal to cancer cells.

Advaxis is now preparing for clinical trials of Lovaxin B, their cancer-fighting vaccine for the treatment of breast cancer. The goal is to treat women who have pre-existing breast cancer with Lovaxin B by invoking an immune system response that will prevent the reoccurrence of the cancer.

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