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

Abstract

Objective

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.

Methods

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

Results

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.

Conclusions

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.

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Acknowledgments

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.

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Correspondence to Masaki Nagaya or Yoshikazu Yonemitsu.

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Kobayashi, M., Shimodaira, S., Nagai, K. et al. Prognostic factors related to add-on dendritic cell vaccines on patients with inoperable pancreatic cancer receiving chemotherapy: a multicenter analysis. Cancer Immunol Immunother 63, 797–806 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00262-014-1554-7

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Keywords

  • Advanced pancreatic cancer
  • Chemotherapy
  • Dendritic cell vaccine
  • OK-432
  • Erythema