New mRNA Vaccine Offers Hope Against Glioblastoma

Scientists from the University of Florida in America have designed a new vaccine for cancer that prompts the immune system to target glioblastoma. Glioblastoma is an aggressive type of cancer that forms in the spinal cord and/or brain. Roughly 19,000 people in the European Union are afflicted by this disease annually.

The treatments used to manage glioblastoma haven’t changed since around 2000, with common treatments including radiotherapy, chemotherapy and surgical interventions. The average duration of survival for patients with glioblastoma is roughly 15 months.

The new vaccine triggers the immune system to eliminate cells for cancers that are hard to treat. It uses a version of mRNA technology, akin to what is used in coronavirus vaccines, but with some changes.

For one, this cancer vaccine utilizes cells obtained from the tumor of a patient to develop a personalized treatment. Secondly, the vaccine includes a newly designed delivery system that generates a fast response from immune systems.

In a statement, Elias Sayour, the study’s senior author, explained that the researchers injected particle clusters, which alerted the immune system in a deeper way than single particles did. To develop their vaccine, the researchers collected genetic material dubbed RNA from every patient’s tumors. Once this was done, they wrapped this genetic material in lipid nanoparticles to create a package that, when injected into the bloodstream of the patient, looked like viruses and caused the immune system to respond.

Sayour explained that in under two days, they observed a shift in the tumors, which shifted to extremely active immune responses from silenced responses. This research is the result of findings from prior studies that started with experiments in preclinical mice models and evolved into a trial that involved 10 dogs with advanced cancer. Dogs sometimes develop brain tumors spontaneously, resulting in terminal outcomes.

The study’s coauthor, Professor Duane Mitchell, stated that this was a new and unique way to deliver genetic material to trigger rapid and significant immune responses. The researchers plan to carry out a clinical trial testing the vaccine’s effectiveness in 24 pediatric and adult patients. Their objective is to confirm their findings.

In their report, team members emphasized the need for more research to determine the best techniques to trigger the immune system while limiting possible side effects.

The scientists reported their findings in the “Cell” journal earlier this month.

Various departments and divisions in the institution were involved in the study, including neurosurgery, pediatrics, quantitative sciences, hematology-oncology and genetics, among many others.

This dimension of exploring mRNA vaccines in the fight against brain cancers adds onto efforts by entities such as CNS Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: CNSP) to develop new formulations that can offer brain-cancer patients better clinical outcomes.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to CNS Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: CNSP) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/CNSP

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