Blood advances 2(3) 224-234 doi 10.1182/bloodadvances.2017014175
A National Cancer Institute consensus study on prioritization of cancer antigens ranked the Wilms tumor 1 (WT1) protein as the top immunotherapy target in cancer. We previously reported a pilot study of a multivalent WT1 peptide vaccine (galinpepimut-S) in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients. We have now conducted a phase 2 study investigating this vaccine in adults with AML in first complete remission (CR1). Patients received 6 vaccinations administered over 10 weeks with the potential to receive 6 additional monthly doses if they remained in CR1. Immune responses (IRs) were evaluated after the 6th and 12th vaccinations by CD4T-cell proliferation, CD8T-cell interferon-γ secretion (enzyme-linked immunospot), or the CD8-relevant WT1 peptide major histocompatibility complex tetramer assay (HLA-A*02 patients only). Twenty-two patients (7 males; median age, 64 years) were treated. Fourteen patients (64%) completed ≥6 vaccinations, and 9 (41%) received all 12 vaccine doses. Fifteen patients (68%) relapsed, and 10 (46%) died. The vaccine was well tolerated, with the most common toxicities being grade 1/2 injection site reactions (46%), fatigue (32%), and skin induration (32%). Median disease-free survival from CR1 was 16.9 months, whereas the overall survival from diagnosis has not yet been reached but is estimated to be ≥67.6 months. Nine of 14 tested patients (64%) had an IR in ≥1 assay (CD4 or CD8). These results indicated that the WT1 vaccine was well tolerated, stimulated a specific IR, and was associated with survival in excess of 5 years in this cohort of patients. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT01266083.