In the SAKK 11/16 trial, we investigate whether the immunotherapy MVX-ONCO-1 is effective, safe and tolerable in cases of advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck area. This immunotherapy consists of dead tumor cells from the patient and genetically modified cells, which are combined in a capsule. To achieve this, the patient’s own tumor cells are removed, deadened in a laboratory, and processed into a vaccine. This vaccine is then administered during the treatment. The immune system reacts by forming antibodies against the tumor cells, which helps the immune system attack and destroy the tumor. The genetically modified cells release adjuvants which additionally stimulate the immune system.
The immunotherapy with MVX-ONCO-1 has only been tested in humans in a small phase I trial. However, the individual components of this immunotherapy, the patient’s own tumor cells, the genetically modified cells as well as the capsules, have been tested in multiple clinical trials.