Healthcare Industry News: Herceptin
News Release - May 15, 2006
Advaxis Continues Advancement of Two Listeria Vaccines Targeting Cancers Affecting WomenNORTH BRUNSWICK, N.J.--(HSMN NewsFeed)--May 15, 2006--Advaxis, Inc. (OTCBB: ADXS ), a New Jersey-based developer of Listeria cancer vaccines, has shown strong pre-clinical results in its treatment of breast and ovarian cancer, which follows its development of a therapeutic agent for the treatment of cervical cancer. The results also indicate potential uses against other forms of cancer.
As previously disclosed, the Company's vaccine for breast cancer - Lovaxin B - has demonstrated strong pre-clinical results using Her-2, a cell surface protein that, when functioning normally, has been found to be a key component in regulating cell growth. Her-2 is the basis for the Genentech drug Herceptin®, used to treat women with advanced metastatic breast cancer. Advaxis has shown that various fragments of Her-2 not previously known to have activity, when combined with its proprietary Listeria based vectors, are showing strong anti-tumor activity in animals.
Advaxis has now developed an additional vaccine to treat ovarian cancer, Lovaxin S. This is a Listeria based vaccine using stratum corneum chymotryptic enzyme (SCCE), intended to induce ovarian tumor antigen-specific responses and antigen-specific helper T cell responses.
Dr. John Rothman, VP Clinical Development of Advaxis said: "There is a need to develop a less debilitating and stressful therapeutic approach to ovarian cancer because the disease, without obvious symptoms, often goes undiagnosed until it has advanced and spread to other organs, which results in the requirement for very toxic and debilitating therapies. In 2005, there were 22,220 new cases in the United States, and 16,210 deaths."
The Lovaxin S vaccine was formulated in six weeks by the Advaxis research and development team, showing the effectiveness and strength of the Listeria platform. This broadly enabling platform -- a result of more than 10 years of innovative work by Yvonne Paterson, Ph.D., Professor of Microbiology at the University of Pennsylvania -- is based upon the concept that in order to immunologically treat cancer and other diseases it is best to use a modified infectious microorganism to elicit the most profound immune response possible. It has been found that the unique microbe Listeria monocytogenes is capable of simultaneously stimulating every part of the immune system, thus effectively coordinating innate and cellular adaptive immune responses to existing cancers and other diseases.
Roni Appel, President and CEO of Advaxis, commented: "The Advaxis Listeria technology is applicable to a wide variety of antigens and, hence, will be useful in a wide variety of cancers. Since the Listeria-based technology platform is already complete, developing additional vaccines by using other effective tumor-specific antigen fusion proteins is extremely practical."
The Company believes that in addition to breast cancer and ovarian cancer these vaccines could be efficacious in treating additional indications such as pancreatic and lung cancer.
Both Lovaxin B and Lovaxin S need to be tested for stability, potency and toxicology before entering upcoming clinical trials.
Based in North Brunswick, New Jersey. Advaxis is developing proprietary Listeria cancer vaccines based on technology developed by Dr. Yvonne Paterson, professor of microbiology at the University of Pennsylvania, and chair person of Advaxis' Scientific Advisory Board. Advaxis' is developing therapeutic cancer vaccines that enhance the immune system's cancer-fighting abilities through its proprietary Listeria monocytogenes based system, which utilizes two immunological mechanisms (Innate and Classical Immunity) to develop safer and more effective Listeria based cancer vaccines. Advaxis is the exclusive licensee of a patented broadly enabling Listeria platform technology that can elicit effective anti-tumor responses. Advaxis' lead Listeria vaccine candidate, Lovaxin C, targets cervical and head and neck cancers. Further Listeria vaccines in development target breast, ovarian and lung cancers. Advaxis has entered a Phase I/II clinical trial. The Listeria platform will also have applications in the fields of infectious disease and autoimmune disorders.
Certain statements contained in this press release are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. The statements contained herein that are not purely historical are forward looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements deal with the Company's current plans, intentions, beliefs and expectations and statements of future economic performance. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause the Company's actual results in future periods to differ materially from what is currently anticipated. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include those discussed from time to time in reports filed by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company cannot guarantee its future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements.
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