Purpose: The safety and clinical efficacy of WT1 human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I peptide vaccine have been established, but the safety of a cocktail vaccine of WT1 HLA class I and II peptides has not. To verify its safety, we performed a phase I clinical trial for patients with recurrent malignant gliomas and assessed the immunological responses and survival data.
Patients and methods: Fourteen HLA-A*24:02-positive patients with recurrent malignant glioma (2 with grade 3, 12 with grade 4) were enrolled. Every week, the patients received alternately a vaccine containing 3 mg of WT1 HLA-A*24:02-restricted (HLA class I) peptide and a cocktail vaccine of the HLA class I peptide and one of 0.75, 1.5 or 3 mg of the WT1 HLA class II peptide. For patients who showed no significant adverse effects within 6 weeks, the WT1 vaccine was continued at 2-4-week intervals.
Results: Eleven of the 14 patients completed WT1 vaccination for 6 weeks, while 3 patients dropped out earlier due to disease progression. All patients showed grade I level of skin disorders at the injection sites. No grade III/IV toxicity or dose-limiting toxicity was observed for any dose of WT1 HLA class II peptide. Six of the 14 patients had stable disease at 6 weeks. Median OS and 1-year OS rates were 24.7 weeks and 36%, respectively.
Conclusion: The safety of a cocktail vaccine of WT1 HLA class I and II peptides for malignant gliomas was verified. This vaccine is, therefore, considered promising for patients with recurrent malignant glioma.
Keywords: Cancer immunotherapy; Cancer vaccine; HLA class II peptide; Malignant glioma; Peptide vaccine; WT1.