Published newly in the journal Science Translational Medicine, a report has uncovered that a vaccine, experimental as yet, has proved effective in its Phase 1 clinical trial for women who have already undergone a treatment for cervical lesions.
VGX-3100, as the drug is dubbed, as per the findings, uses synthetic DNA to treat patients with abnormal precancerous cervix changes. Also, a process similar to gene therapy is followed as the drug harnesses the human immune system and inserts a DNA piece into the cells of patients.
The aim is to help produce a protein, which ultimately activates the immune system to fight HPV-altered cells. HPV is being targeted since most of the cervical cancer cases are found related to the same, via either of its types, including Type 16 and Type 18 strains.
Some 18 women with these strains were enrolled in the study and were given three doses of DNA vaccine using electroporation. It has been told that high levels of immune cells or killer T-cells are produced by some women with precancerous cervical lesions caused by these strains.
"We want to use the existing hardware in our immune system, but use better software to train our immune system to fight off disease", said Joseph Kim, chief executive and president of the experimental vaccine maker Inovio Pharmaceuticals.
A further study is needed to check if the drug works in untreated women as well.
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