First patient tests personal cancer vaccine

Man sitting with a nurse as he receives the first cancer vaccine.

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A research team at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham (QEHB) has treated the first patient in England with a personalised vaccine for their bowel cancer.

As part of the nationwide first, Elliot Pfebve from Walsall, received the first dose in March. The study, sponsored by biotechnology company BioNTech, is one of several vaccine trials that will be taking place across the NHS, to treat different types of cancer, through NHS England’s new Cancer Vaccine Launch Pad. Patients who agree to take part will have a sample of their cancer tissue and a blood test taken. If they are suitable, they can be referred to their nearest NHS trial site, meaning patients from hospitals across the country are able to participate.
Dr Victoria Kunene, QEHB’s principal investigator for this trial and consultant clinical oncologist, said: “These investigational cancer vaccines are created by analysing a patient’s tumour to identify mutations specific to their own cancer. Using this information, we can then create an individualised cancer vaccine.“

Find out more. NHS England » Thousands of NHS patients to access trials of personalised cancer ‘vaccines’