Glioblastoma, recognized as the most aggressive primary brain cancer in adults is also known to be among the most immunosuppressive of tumors. A Phase 2 clinical trial of PVSRIPO, a revolutionary viral immunotherapy for cancer treatment, in combination with Keytruda (pembrolizumab) is underway across the United States. University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center is one of the trial's study sites and recently delivered the first patient dose in the trial.
Andrew E. Sloan, MD, is director of the Brain Tumor & Neuro-Oncology Center at the University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center and a member of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center. "This trial combines the polio vaccine — which modifies the immunosuppressive milieu in tumor to prime the anti-tumor immune response in the brain—and a checkpoint inhibitor that 'takes the brakes off' the systemic immune system which allows the peripheral immune system to send cells from bone marrow and circulation to help combat the brain tumor," explains Sloan.
The study aims primarily to determine the percentage of patients responding to the therapy, as well as its safety and tolerability. Researchers will also examine the effects of treatment on patients’ survival and disease progression.