Immunostimulation with the MelVac platform emulates the most optimal, systemic, natural immune response. Further, it encompasses the most current knowledge of cancer immunology. The CureVax product DC-MelVac and its platform technology was patented in 2006 and that consists of several major components, each of which has entirely novel functions. The unique components of the CureVax vaccine platform are:
A. Vaccinia Virus with cytokine production. We chose IL-2 as it is the most appropriate T cell driving cytokine. The way our clinical protocol is designed is that it is expected to drive the activation of T cells previously rendered anergic by the cancer. This is most efficiently accomplished and driven by recombinant vaccinia-IL-2. Activation of anergic T cells by this mechanism is novel both as a concept and by its use as a parameter of clinical efficacy. This is an innovative approach that has not been previously attempted. We believe without this step, optimal, multivalent cancer associated T cell response is not possible, nor sustainable.
B. The second novelty of our patent/platform technology is the generation of a multivalent antigen repertoire capable of activating multiple cytotoxic T cells simultaneously by an innovative “vaccinia based antigen retrieval” technique. This technology alleviates the deficiency of the use of single defined antigens and the use of additional adjuvants. To our knowledge, no technology or product exists that equals the multitude of tumor-associated antigens that we have in our allogeneic vaccine mix. Furthermore, the MelVac platform is accompanied with its own adjuvant (vaccinia virus) that can prime and stimulate the maturation of dendritic cells into supreme antigen-presenting cells. All failures of dendritic cell immunotherapy to date are because of the inability to allow them to mature optimally in vitro. For the first time, in a carefully dose titrated manner, we will allow the space for the dendritic cells to mature to perform their natural antigen presentation’ function. The present knowledge base allows us to select the most optimal dendritic cell subsets.