Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy

, Volume 63, Issue 8, pp 797–806 | Cite as

Prognostic factors related to add-on dendritic cell vaccines on patients with inoperable pancreatic cancer receiving chemotherapy: a multicenter analysis

  • Masanori Kobayashi
  • Shigetaka Shimodaira
  • Kazuhiro Nagai
  • Masahiro Ogasawara
  • Hidenori Takahashi
  • Hirofumi Abe
  • Mitsugu Tanii
  • Masato Okamoto
  • Sun-ichi Tsujitani
  • Seiichi Yusa
  • Takefumi Ishidao
  • Junji Kishimoto
  • Yuta Shibamoto
  • Masaki NagayaEmail author
  • Yoshikazu YonemitsuEmail author
  • The DC Vaccine Study Group at the Japan Society of Innovative Cell Therapy (J-SICT)
Original Article



Dendritic cell (DC)-based cancer vaccines may have a significant benefit to patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. However, variations among clinical studies make it difficult to compare clinical outcomes. Here, we identified factors that determined the clinical benefits by analyzing data obtained at seven Japanese institutions that employed the same DC preparation and treatment regimens.


Of 354 patients who met the inclusion criteria, 255 patients who received standard chemotherapy combined with peptide-pulsed DC vaccines were analyzed.


The mean survival time from diagnosis was 16.5 months (95 % CI 14.4–18.5) and that from the first vaccination was 9.9 months (95 % CI 8.0–12.9). Known prognostic baseline factors related to advanced pancreatic cancer, namely ECOG-PS, peritoneal metastasis, liver metastasis, and the prognostic nutrition index, were also representative. Importantly, we found that erythema reaction after vaccination was an independent and treatment-related prognostic factor for better survival and that OK-432 might be a good adjuvant enhancing the antitumor immunity during DC vaccination.


This is the first report of a multicenter clinical study suggesting the feasibility and possible clinical benefit of an add-on DC vaccine in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer who are undergoing chemotherapy. These findings need to be addressed in well-controlled prospective randomized trials.


Advanced pancreatic cancer Chemotherapy Dendritic cell vaccine OK-432 Erythema 



This report is dedicated to the patients who participated in our studies and to their primary oncology doctors. We also thank the present and former staff of each participating institution. Data collection from each institution was supported by the Research and Development Division of tella Inc., and data analyses were supported and checked by Dr. J. Kishimoto, Kyushu University, as an independent specialist from the company.

Conflict of interest

Prof. Y. Yonemitsu is also a member of the Board of Directors on Science and Medicine at tella Inc., and Drs. S. Yusa and T. Ishidao are the current and former chiefs of the Research and Development Division of tella Inc., respectively. Dr. Okamoto, who was excluded from the data analyses, is a stockholder of tella Inc. All remaining authors have declared no conflicts of interest.

Supplementary material

262_2014_1554_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (136 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 136 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masanori Kobayashi
    • 1
  • Shigetaka Shimodaira
    • 2
  • Kazuhiro Nagai
    • 3
  • Masahiro Ogasawara
    • 4
  • Hidenori Takahashi
    • 5
  • Hirofumi Abe
    • 6
  • Mitsugu Tanii
    • 5
  • Masato Okamoto
    • 7
  • Sun-ichi Tsujitani
    • 8
  • Seiichi Yusa
    • 9
  • Takefumi Ishidao
    • 9
  • Junji Kishimoto
    • 10
  • Yuta Shibamoto
    • 11
  • Masaki Nagaya
    • 12
    • 13
    Email author
  • Yoshikazu Yonemitsu
    • 14
    Email author
  • The DC Vaccine Study Group at the Japan Society of Innovative Cell Therapy (J-SICT)
  1. 1.Seren Clinic NagoyaNagoyaJapan
  2. 2.Cell Processing CenterShinshu University HospitalMatsumoto, NaganoJapan
  3. 3.Transfusion and Cell Therapy UnitNagasaki University HospitalNagasakiJapan
  4. 4.Department of HematologySapporo Hokuyu HospitalSapporoJapan
  5. 5.Seren Clinic FukuokaFukuokaJapan
  6. 6.Seren Clinic KobeKobeJapan
  7. 7.Institute for Advanced Medical ResearchKeio University School of MedicineTokyoJapan
  8. 8.National Center for Global Health and MedicineTokyoJapan
  9. 9.Research and Development DivisionTella Inc.TokyoJapan
  10. 10.Data Management Center, Center for Clinical and Translational ResearchKyushu University HospitalFukuokaJapan
  11. 11.Department of RadiologyNagoya City University Graduate School of Medical SciencesNagoyaJapan
  12. 12.Seren Clinic TokyoTokyoJapan
  13. 13.Department of ImmunologySt. Marianna UniversityKawasakiJapan
  14. 14.R&D Laboratory for Innovative Biotherapeutics, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical SciencesKyushu UniversityFukuokaJapan

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