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Breast Cancer Vaccine Studied at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center

WINSTON-SALEM – The Comprehensive Cancer Center at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center is one of seven sites in the world participating in a clinical trial evaluating the effectiveness of an anti-cancer vaccine in reducing the risk of breast cancer recurrence.

The vaccines, composed of GP2 or AE 37 peptides of the HER2\neu protein, a cancer protein found in 60 to 70 percent of breast cancers, and GM-CSF, an FDA-approved drug that stimulates bone marrow to make new blood cells.
“The data from the preliminary trials of this vaccine are quite promising,” said John H. Stewart, IV, M.D., principal investigator of the study at Wake Forest Baptist. “The use of this protein-based vaccine reduced the recurrence rate in women with a high risk of recurrence by 33 percent.”
The vaccines have been proven safe in Phase I trials (earliest phase of human testing) and appear to stimulate the immune system.
Eligible participants are patients diagnosed with invasive breast cancer who are at high risk for recurrence and are HER2/neu positive. Participants will receive six doses of vaccine over an 18-month period. There are six study sites in the United States and one in Greece.
The national goal for patient accrual is about 600 and Wake Forest Baptist plans to recruit 100 patients into the trial. For more information call 336-713-4788.

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Media Contact: Jonnie Rohrer, (336) 716-6972, jrohrer@wfubmc.edu; or Bonnie Davis, (336) 716-4977, bdavis@wfubmc.edu; Shannon Koontz (336) 716-2415, shkoontz@wfubmc.edu.

About Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center: Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center is an academic health system comprised of North Carolina Baptist Hospital, Brenner Children’s Hospital and Wake Forest University Health Sciences, which operates the university’s School of Medicine and Piedmont Triad Research Park. The system comprises 1,154 acute care, rehabilitation and long-term care beds and has been ranked as one of “America’s Best Hospitals” by U.S. News & World Report since 1993. Wake Forest Baptist is ranked 32nd in the nation by America’s Top Doctors for the number of its doctors considered best by their peers. The institution ranks in the top third in funding by the National Institutes of Health and 4th in the Southeastern United States in revenues from its licensed intellectual property.

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