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Translational immune correlates of indirect antibody immunization in a randomized phase II study using scheduled combination therapy with carboplatin/paclitaxel plus oregovomab in ovarian cancer patients

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A Correction to this article was published on 26 March 2020

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The standard-of-care (SOC) first-line therapy for ovarian cancer (OC) patients is plagued with high relapse rates. Several studies indicated the immune system’s prominent role changing the disease course in OC patients. Chemo-immunotherapy regimens, currently being explored, include oregovomab, which is a monoclonal antibody specific for the OC associated antigen carbohydrate/cancer antigen 125 (CA125) that yielded promising results when administered together with SOC in a previous study. The QPT-ORE-002 multi-site phase II randomized study demonstrated that in patients with advanced OC, oregovomab combined with first-line SOC improved overall and progression-free survival, compared to SOC alone. The study included an Italian cohort in which we demonstrated that adding oregovomab to SOC resulted in increased patient numbers with amplified CA125-specific CD8+T lymphocytes/ml peripheral blood counts, which might explain the improved therapeutic effect of SOC + oregovomab over SOC alone. Predictive for oregovomab efficacy was a less suppressive immune environment at baseline as indicated by low numbers of circulating myeloid-derived suppressor cells, subset type 4, and a low neutrophil-and-monocyte to lymphocyte ratio.

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Change history

  • 26 March 2020

    The original version of this article unfortunately contained a mistake.



Analysis of variance


Carbohydrate/cancer antigen 125


Confidence interval


Dendritic cell


Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group


Hazard ratio


Immune complex


Immature dendritic cell


Mature dendritic cell


Neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio




Neutrophil-and-monocyte-to-lymphocyte ratio


Ovarian cancer


Overall survival


Relapse-free survival


Residual tumor


Staphylococcal enterotoxin B


Standard of care


Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes


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This study was funded by OncoQuest Inc (Edmonton, AB, Canada).

Author information

Authors and Affiliations



Conception and design: Alessandra Battaglia, Andrea Fattorossi, Madi R. Madiyalakan, Christopher Nicodemus and Giovanni Scambia. Development of methodology: Alessandra Battaglia, Alexia Buzzonetti, Andrea Fattorossi and Marco Fossati. Acquisition and analysis of data: Alexia Buzzonetti and Marco Fossati. Data interpretation: Alessandra Battaglia and Andrea Fattorossi. Statistical analysis: Alessandra Battaglia and Yolanda D. Mahnke with the help of ZellNet (Fort Lee, NJ, USA). Writing and reviewing of manuscript: Alessandra Battaglia, Andrea Fattorossi, Madi R. Madiyalakan, Yolanda D. Mahnke, Christopher Nicodemus and Giovanni Scambia.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Alessandra Battaglia.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

Yolanda D. Mahnke is an immunology advisor to OncoQuest. Christopher Nicodemus is a consultant to OncoQuest, Inc. and owns shares in Quest PharmaTech, Edmonton Alberta. Madi R. Madiyalakan is an employee of OncoQuest Inc. and Quest PharmaTech and owns shares in OncoQuest Inc. and Quest PharmaTech. The authors declare that there is no other conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This QPT-ORE-002 study (clinical trial information: NCT01616303) was performed in accordance with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. It was approved by the following institutional ethics committees:

Study site number


Ethics committee


Campus Biomedico University, Rome, Italy

Comitato Etico dell’Università Campus Bio Medico di Roma

Via Alvaro del Portillo, 200

00128 Rome


Fondazione Policlinico Universitario A.Gemelli IRCCS, Rome, Italy

Comitato Etico dell’Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore e Annesso Policlinico “A. Gemelli”

Largo Francesco Vito, 1

00168 Rome


Istituto Nazionale Tumori-IRCCS, Milan, Italy

Comitato Etico della Fondazione IRCCS “Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori”

Via G. Venezian, 1

20133 Milan


Azienda Ospedaliera Cannizzaro, Catania, Italy

Comitato Etico Catania 1

Via S. Sofia, 78

95123 Catania


Azienda Ospedali Riuniti di Bergamo, Bergamo, Italy

Comitato Etico della Provincia di Bergamo

Piazza OMS, 1

24127 Bergamo


Policlinico Umberto I, Rome, Italy

Comitato Etico dell’Università Sapienza

Viale del Policlinico, 155

00161 Rome

Informed consent

All patients included in the study provided written informed consent according to the International Council for Harmonization of Technical Requirements for Pharmaceuticals for Human Use (ICH) guidelines. The informed consent, which included consent to the treatment, use of their biological specimen (peripheral blood) and data acquisition and processing, was obtained from patients prior to the initiation of the study.

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Some of the results included in this paper were previously published in a poster at the 20th biennial international meeting (November 4–7, 2017, Vienna, Austria) of the European Society of Gynaecological Oncology (ESGO).

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Battaglia, A., Buzzonetti, A., Fossati, M. et al. Translational immune correlates of indirect antibody immunization in a randomized phase II study using scheduled combination therapy with carboplatin/paclitaxel plus oregovomab in ovarian cancer patients. Cancer Immunol Immunother 69, 383–397 (2020).

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