Moderna is setting out to revolutionise health care by developing a vaccine which targets specific proteins on a surface protein of viruses that cause cancer.
The company’s first cancer-fighting vaccine, called CoVID-19, was designed to be a co-formulated vaccine dose with a standard human vaccine.
CoVID-19 is capable of protecting against a number of viruses including hepatitis B, hepatitis C, human papilloma virus, influenza, poliovirus, influenza A, Hantavirus, and in children, cholera.
Trials showed that this vaccine also protected against several different types of cancer, such as adenocarcinoma, papillary thyroid carcinoma, malignant lupus (an autoimmune disease) and pleural mesothelioma.
The company also used similar technology to deliver drug therapeutic payloads to these immunised cells – thus enabling vaccines to include both regulatory and therapeutic properties in the same dosing regimens.
The results presented showed that CoVID-19 performed well in children aged between 6-11 years of age. Patients showed a significant reduction in tumour growth in a non-randomised trial, after eight weeks of vaccination and refractory to standard treatment.
The vaccine proved to be equally effective for both high- and low-dose co-formulation.
Dr Arnab Sen, founder and CEO of Moderna, said the company is truly optimistic about the results, and looks forward to conducting trials in pediatric patients.
“The aim is to develop a vaccine with a dual role that protects against cancerous cells while also potentially helping in the battle against a variety of other diseases,” Dr Sen said.
“We will be conducting clinical trials in paediatric patients where the goal is to investigate the preventive and therapeutic effects of CoVID-19 against cancers – especially in the areas of melanoma, cervical cancer, and other cancers with chemotherapy-resistant characteristics. The results presented today are exciting and represent a significant step toward our goals in cancer vaccine research,” he added.