FAQ

About Dendritic Cell Vaccine Therapy

  • What type of therapy is dendritic cell vaccine therapy?

    It is a state-of-the-art cancer therapy that targets and attacks cancer cells only, by means of the patient’s own immune system.
    Dendritic cells act as the “control tower” that teaches lymphocytes, which act as soldiers that attack cancer cells. The “dendritic cell vaccine therapy” that tella provides takes advantage of such a role of the dendritic cell.

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  • How long does it take to treat cancer with dendritic cell vaccine therapy?

    One set of therapy, consisting of 5 to 7 injections, takes 3 to 4 months on an average.

    The standard period of one set of dendritic cell vaccine treatment is about 3- 4 months. The effect of dendritic vaccine is evaluated by use of blood tests and CT after the end of one set of the treatment.
  • Can I receive dendritic cell vaccine therapy even when I don’t have my own cancer tissue?

    You can undergo dendritic cell vaccine therapy using an artificially produced cancer antigens.

    In dendritic cell vaccine therapy, the choice of cancer antigen is important.
    The patient's own cancer tissue is sometimes used as a cancer marker, but the number of patients who can use such tissue is extremely limited at present.
    The “dendritic cell vaccine therapy” by tella can be administered to most of the patients because an artificial antigen, such as “WT1,” is used in the therapy in many cases.

    “WT1” is one of the cancer antigens that have been reported to be expressed in substantially all types of cancer.
    Haruo Sugiyama, Professor at the Graduate School of Osaka University, has been demonstrating the importance of WT1 fragments (peptides). “Dendritic cell vaccine therapy,” a cancer vaccine therapy, has become available to a wider range of patients because of the use of WT1 as the cancer antigen.

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About the Cost of Treatment

  • How much does dendritic cell vaccine therapy cost?

    One set, consisting of 5 to 7 injections, costs about 2 million yen on average.

    The average cost of treatment with dendritic cell vaccine therapy is about 2 million yen per set. The treatment regimen varies with the physical condition of the patient, and so does the treatment cost. For more details, please contact a medical institution near you.

  • Is dendritic cell vaccine therapy covered by public insurance?

    Public insurance does not cover dendritic cell vaccine therapy at present.

    Dendritic cell vaccine therapy is one of the latest medical treatments and private treatments that is not covered by insurance. Patients must pay all of the expenses.

About Results/Effects of Treatment

  • How is dendritic cell vaccine therapy effective?

    It has been reported that when combined with anticancer agents, dendritic cell vaccine therapy was effective in about 30% of patients.

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  • Is dendritic cell vaccine therapy effective for the prevention of recurrence?

    The use of dendritic cell vaccine therapy to prevent recurrence after standard treatment is considered beneficial.

    In dendritic cell vaccine therapy, lymphocytes that have learned the cancer maker by the function of dendritic cells circulate through the entire body to attack cancer cells. In addition, some of the lymphocytes that have learned the cancer maker remain in the body and continue surveillance. When such lymphocytes come across cancer cells again, the lymphocytes are activated and attack cancer cells. Because the lymphocytes remain effective for a long period of time in the body, dendritic cell vaccine therapy is expected to be effective for the prevention of recurrence after standard treatment.

  • How many patients have been treated with dendritic cell vaccine therapy?

    Cumulatively, dendritic cell vaccine therapy has so far been used in about 11,220 patients in medical institutions under contract with tella(as of March 2017).

  • Are there any adverse reactions in dendritic cell vaccine therapy?

    Common adverse reactions include itching at the injection site, swelling, redness of the skin, and fever.

    Adverse reactions during blood collection:
    In order to prepare dendritic cell vaccine, apheresis (collection of some components of blood) is performed to extract the cells from which dendritic cells are derived from the patient's own blood, and symptoms such as numbness around the mouth or in a limb may occur during apheresis. These symptoms are due to a decrease in blood calcium that is caused by the drug used in apheresis to prevent coagulation of blood. Thus, during apheresis, calcium is supplemented in the form of calcium preparation via infusion, etc., to improve the symptoms.
    Adverse reactions after administration of vaccine:
    In dendritic cell vaccine therapy with autologous cancer tissue and artificial antigen fever or red swelling at the injection site may occur.
    In local dendritic cell vaccine therapy, dendritic cells are directly injected into the location of the cancer with an injection needle and, therefore, adverse reactions (complications) due to injection may occur. In addition, fever or pain caused by inflammation of the injection site may occur.

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