Press News

Press News

2011.11.07 Collaborative Clinical Study for Advanced Melanoma Starts with Keio University School of Medicine~Phase 1 and 2 clinical studies for a of DC vaccine therapy with anti-cancer drugs~

tella, Inc. (Head office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director and President: Yuichiro Yazaki) has signed a collaborative research agreement with the School of Medicine of Keio University, which is located in Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo. Based on this agreement, tella and Keio University will start Phase 1 and 2 clinical studies for the treatment of advanced melanoma (malignant melanoma predominantly occurs on the skin) in order to evaluate the safety and efficacy of WT1 peptide*1 pulsed DC vaccine therapy*2 in combination with anti-cancer drugs.

1. Background
Melanoma is difficult to treat because chemical therapy is not very effective and this disease is difficult to control using localized treatments such as surgery and radiation when it reoccurs or spreads. In addition, melanoma is a type of cancer with high immunogenicity (the ability to instigate an immune response). As a result, there are many research projects concerning the use of immunotherapy to treat melanoma. More advances in immunotherapy may lead to an improvement in the prognosis for individuals who have melanoma. In particular, there are high expectations for DC vaccine therapy as a new treatment for improving the prognosis for melanoma patients.

2. Summary of the clinical study
The lead physician for the collaborative clinical study will be Professor Masayuki Amagai of Department of Dermatology, Keio University School of Medicine, who will supervise and conduct the study. Immunological analysis will be performed by Professor Yutaka Kawakami of Division of Cellular Signaling Institute for Advanced Medical Research, Keio University School of Medicine. Preparation and administration of DC vaccine will be performed with the cooperation of Tokyo Midtown Medical Center*3, which is one of tella’s contracted medical institutions. tella has the exclusive right to use DC vaccine therapy with WT1 peptides. The Company also has technologies, know-how and a variety of basic data concerning this therapy. All of these resources will be provided by tella for this collaborative clinical study.
The Company and the Keio University School of Medicine will use this collaborative clinical study to accumulate data based on the scientific evidence for the DC vaccine therapy. The purpose is to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the treatment.