<jats:title>Abstract</jats:title> <jats:sec> <jats:title>INTRODUCTION</jats:title> <jats:p>The cytomegalovirus (CMV) antigen, pp65, is ubiquitously expressed in malignant glioma and medulloblastoma but not in healthy brain. The objective of this Phase I trial (NCT03299309) was to assess the safety and feasibility of a novel pp65 peptide vaccine (PEP-CMV) in children and young adults with recurrent medulloblastoma and malignant glioma.</jats:p> </jats:sec> <jats:sec> <jats:title>METHODS</jats:title> <jats:p>Vaccines contain a synthetic long peptide (SLP) of 26 amino acids encoding multiple potential class I, class II, and antibody epitopes of CMV pp65 across several haplotypes. This SLP is administered as an emulsion in Montanide ISA 51. Patients receive a single course of temozolomide to induce lymphopenia, tetanus/diphtheria toxoid site preconditioning, then vaccines administered intradermally every two weeks for 3 doses, then monthly.</jats:p> </jats:sec> <jats:sec> <jats:title>RESULTS</jats:title> <jats:p>To date, 17 patients have been enrolled. Diagnoses include medulloblastoma (n=1), glioblastoma (n=9), anaplastic oligodendroglioma (n=2), anaplastic astrocytoma (n=2), and malignant glioma NOS (n=3). Mean number of prior treatment regimens is 4.9 (range 1–12). Mean age is 22yo (range 6–35) and 41% of patients are male. The median KPS is 80. The median number of vaccines given at time of analysis is 3.3 (range 1–12). There have been no ≥ 3 Grade toxicities related to the vaccine. One patient developed nausea, vomiting, palpitations, and tachycardia after vaccination and had elevated inflammatory cytokines consistent with cytokine release syndrome. Median PFS is 2.5 months (95% CI: 0.8, not estimable) and median OS is 6.5 months (95% CI 1.8, not estimable). Interim analysis of immune monitoring bloodwork and perfusion MRI to quantify responses to PEP-CMV has been delayed due to COVID-19. However, adults with GBM who received PEP-CMV (NCT02864368) had significant (p≤0.05) increases in GCSF, GM-CSF, IFN-γ, IL-10, IL-2, IL-8, MIP1-α, and TNF-α levels.</jats:p> </jats:sec> <jats:sec> <jats:title>CONCLUSIONS</jats:title> <jats:p>Preliminary results demonstrate that PEP-CMV is feasible and well-tolerated in heavily pretreated, multiply recurrent patients.</jats:p> </jats:sec>






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Publication Info

Thompson, Eric, Daniel Landi, Eric Lipp, Bea Balajonda, James Herndon, Evan Buckley, Charlene Flahiff, Denise Jaggers, et al. (2020). CTIM-21. PEPTIDE VACCINE DIRECTED TO CMV pp65 FOR TREATMENT OF RECURRENT MALIGNANT GLIOMA AND MEDULLOBLASTOMA IN CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS: PRELIMINARY RESULTS OF A PHASE I TRIAL. Neuro-Oncology, 22(Supplement_2). pp. ii37–ii37. 10.1093/neuonc/noaa215.155 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/24048.

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Daniel Bryce Landi

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

Kristin M. Schroeder

Associate Professor of Pediatrics

I have a strong belief that all children diagnosed with cancer should have the same chance of cure regardless of where they live. Since 2014, i have spent six or more months per year in Mwanza, Tanzania, at the Bugando Medical Centre as part of the Duke Global Cancer Program. In addition to developing capacity for pediatric cancer care, my research focuses on creating interventions to improve outcomes and reducing treatment abandonment in low resource settings. 

As a trained pediatric neuro-oncologist, I am also involved in neuro-oncology capacity development in Sub-Saharan Africa, and am collaborating with a multidisciplinary team in Tanzania to establish diagnostic and treatment opportunities for patients. 


Margaret Johnson

Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery

I am a neuro-oncologist, neurologist, and palliative care physician at the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center. I also provide neuro-oncology expertise for the National Tele-Oncology Program and National Precision Oncology Program at the Veteran's Health Administration. My clinical and research interests encompass supportive care and palliative care with a special interest in older adults with brain tumors. The incidence of malignant brain tumors like glioblastoma and non-malignant tumors like meningioma affect aging populations and it is crucial to be able to provide better care for these patients. 


Mustafa Khasraw

Professor of Neurosurgery

I am a physician-scientist with a background in medical oncology and neuro-oncology, with affiliations to multiple departments, research, and training programs at Duke. 

I lead a Tumor Immunobiology Laboratory where we use various wet and dry lab techniques to understand the interactions between tumors and the immune system. Our goal is to identify vulnerabilities that can be targeted for novel therapies.

I serve as the Deputy Director of the Center for Cancer Immunotherapy at the Duke Cancer Institute where we are tasked to facilitate clinical research and translate promising discoveries made by scientists across various departments and cancer types at Duke, particularly in the field of immune and T cell-based therapies.

My team and our laboratory operate in an environment that enables the transition from bench-side basic scientific discoveries to clinical trials, and back to the bench ensuring the evaluation of new treatments for cancer patients.


David Michael Ashley

Rory David Deutsch Distinguished Professor of Neuro-Oncology

My career in cancer research dates more than two decades. I am credentialed in both pediatric and adult neuro-oncology practice and this has been the focus of my efforts in translational research and leadership. As evident from my publication and grant support record, my primary academic focus has been on neurologic tumors, the development of innovative therapies and approaches to care. These efforts have included basic and translational laboratory research. My experience includes moving laboratory findings in brain tumor immunology and epigenetics into early phase clinical trials. I have expertise in immuno-oncology, having developed and clinically tested dendritic cell vaccines and other immuno-therapeutics. My achievements in research have led to change in practice in the care of children and adults with brain tumors, including the introduction of new standards of practice for the delivery of systemic therapy. I am highly regarded for this work, as evidenced by numerous invitations to plenary sessions and symposia of international standing. I have been the principal investigator of a number of important national and international studies, both clinical and pre-clinical. I am recognized as a senior figure and opinion leader in neuro-oncology nationally and internationally. I have held several significant leadership roles, including Director of two major cancer centers, I served as the Chair of Medicine at Deakin University, the Program Director of Cancer Services at University Hospital Barwon Health, and Executive Director of the Western Alliance Academic Health Science Centre (Australia). I began my current position as Director of The Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center, Head, Preuss Laboratory, in March 2018. In this role, I am responsible for the clinical care, research, and educational program related to Brain Tumor Center. I am also a senior investigational neuro-oncologist within the adult brain tumor program at Duke.


John Howard Sampson

Robert H., M.D. and Gloria Wilkins Professor of Neurosurgery, in the School of Medicine

Current research activities involve the immunotherapeutic targeting of a tumor-specific mutation in the epidermal growth factor receptor. Approaches used to target this tumor-specific epitope include unarmed and radiolabeled antibody therapy and cell mediated approaches using peptide vaccines and dendritic cells. Another area of interest involves drug delivery to brain tumors. Translational and clinical work is carried out in this area to formulate the relationship between various direct intratumoral infusion parameters and drug distribution within brain tumors and normal brain.

The Duke Brain Tumor Immunotherapy Program (BTIP) has an emphasis on translational research in Neuro-Oncology. There are two main areas of study. The first is novel mechanisms of delivery of large molecular weight molecules, such as monoclonal antibodies, throughout brain intersitial space using novel intracerebral infusion techniques developed by this laboratory. Studies exploring this technology are undertaken in both small and large laboratory animals and patients with brain tumors.

The other focus of the BTIP is translational immunotherapy. In this line of work, dendritic cell vaccination strategies and adoptive T-cell strategies have been developed to target novel and well-characterized tumor-specific antigens in patients with brain tumors. The BTIP integrates well with and works closely with the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke. The BTIP is well funded and currently holds seven NIH grants, including a SPORE in Brain Cancer grant. There are a large number of investigators at various levels so that students will get exposure to various levels of research and mentorship.

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