DOI: 10.3390/cancers15174209 ISSN:

A Phase 2, Single-Arm, Open-Label Clinical Trial on Adjuvant Peptide-Based Vaccination in Dogs with Aggressive Hemangiosarcoma Undergoing Surgery and Chemotherapy

Laura Marconato, Luca Tiraboschi, Marina Aralla, Silvia Sabattini, Alessia Melacarne, Chiara Agnoli, Andrea Balboni, Marta Salvi, Armando Foglia, Sofia Punzi, Noemi Romagnoli, Maria Rescigno
  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

To test the antitumor effect and safety of peptide-based anticancer vaccination in dogs with hemangiosarcoma undergoing the standard of care (SOC; surgery and doxorubicin), canine hemangiosarcoma cells were infected with Salmonella typhi Ty21a to release immunogenic endoplasmic reticulum stress-related peptides into the extracellular milieu via CX43 hemichannels opening. The infected tumor cell secretome constituted the vaccine. Following the SOC, dogs with biologically aggressive hemangiosarcoma were vaccinated a total of five times, once every 3 weeks, and were followed up with serial imaging. A retrospective population of dogs undergoing the SOC alone served as controls. The primary endpoints were the time to progression (TTP) and overall survival (OS), and the secondary endpoints were toxicity and immune responses. A total of 28 dogs were vaccinated along with the SOC, and 32 received only the SOC. A tumor-specific humoral response along with a vaccine-specific T-cell response was observed. Toxicity did not occur. The TTP and OS were significantly longer in vaccinated versus unvaccinated dogs (TTP: 195 vs. 160 days, respectively; p = 0.001; OS: 276 vs. 175 days, respectively; p = 0.002). One-year survival rates were 35.7% and 6.3% for vaccinated and unvaccinated dogs, respectively. In dogs with hemangiosarcoma undergoing the SOC, the addition of a peptide-based vaccine increased the TTP and OS, while maintaining a safe profile. Moreover, vaccinated dogs developed a tumor-specific response, supporting the feasibility of future phase three studies.

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