Interest in personalized treatment has been fuelled by the concept to tailor therapy with the best response and highest safety margin to ensure better patient care. Personalized medicine holds promise for improving health care while also lowering costs.
An immunogenic personal neoantigen vaccine for melanoma patients using the synthetic peptides provides an opportunity to develop agents that are targeted to patient groups that do not respond to medications as intended and for whom the traditional health systems have otherwise failed.
The T cell epitopes with tumor-specific expression arising from non-silent somatic mutations are not expressed in normal tissues. These neoantigens are mutated peptides with the high-affinity binding of autologous HLA molecules.
The vaccination with neoantigens can induce new T cell specificities in cancer patients. Using the synthetic peptides as a personalized vaccine, researchers found that of 6 vaccinated patients, 4 had no recurrence at 25 months post-vaccination.
The T cells discriminated mutated from wildtype peptide antigens, and directly recognized autologous tumor. From this study, immunizing peptides were selected based on HLA binding predictions. Each patient received up to 20 long peptides in 4 pools.