mRNA cancer vaccine

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I am quite excited at today’s news that Moderna’s individualised mRNA cancer vaccine has entered phase 3 trials. The early target is melanoma, but as it is being delivered alongside Pembrolizumab, it obviously has future extension to other PD-L1 positive cancers, such as my variant of TNBC. If only I can stay around long enough - and if only they can find a way of avoiding the need for it to be served up with pembrolizumab, as that took too many brakes off my immune system. 

  • It really good news, i have to say, i did do, pembrolizumab for the whole two years and for me no side  effects, what so ever., wqas so much kinder than my chemo.

  • Hi Coddfish  the messenger RNA looks to have amazing potential, cancer cells being able to hide from your immune system has always made many treatments less effective, though if this new vaccine can recognise neoantigens coming off the tumour and target it, it could be a game changer and you should be a little excited, best wishes.


  • Unfortunately I only managed 5 infusions, after which my immune system tried very hard to finish me off. It did allow my immune system to work equally effectively on the cancer though, and I am still here. All things considered I have no regrets - it was the best option available to me. 

  • Yes, pd-l1 positive tumours are particularly difficult because they use the body’s own system of creating immune privileged zones to shield the cancer. It’s like the cancer sits behind Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak. 

  • We do have to give things a go, my very first chemo gave me a heart attack.  i begged to have some more, which i did, though a different combo no problems. then  orembo.

    We all carry on to tell the tale.

  • You were very brave, Ellie, to continue with the treatment after such a scary start!

    The news about this new vaccine trial caught my eye too...I know it is being trialled with melanoma patients, but I think I heard that it also might work for certain kidney cancers too. As Coddfish said, if I can be around long enough, perhaps I might get to test it out! 

    Here's hoping for good news....for ALL of us!


  • I was not brave   Kate, was a very very rare side effect of the chemo, caused a blood clot that went to heart.

    I was diagnosed in the march and prembo immunotherapy  was not about, though it was for melanoma, then NICE licensed it for lung cancer and i started it in the December..

    So i m sure your will be about along with others, will be a long line of all of us.

  • Yes, I read it with interest too.  Melanoma right now, and being tested for other cancers, including lung, bladder and kidney. 

    If anyone joins the phase 3 trial, do let us know - recruiting now, it seems.   

  • Hi Coddfish, The thing is, now we know where the cancer is hiding (behind HP's invisible cloak) then we can work our own magic to hide from it! As long as we keep on keeping on, then the vaccine will be ready!

    Love Annette x

    Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery, Today is a Gift!!!
  • Yes, I often use the Harry Potter invisibility cloak analogy to explain my cancer to people. Most people can’t understand why I can’t just go on an oestrogen blocker like most people with breast cancer can.