newslineVaccine to Treat Dogs with Oral Melanoma ApprovedVaccine to Treat Dogs with Oral Melanoma ApprovedVaccine to Treat Dogs with Oral Melanoma ApprovedThe U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved a conditionally-licensed vaccine from Merial to treat oral melanoma.The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved a conditionally-licensed vaccine from Merial to treat oral melanoma.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved a conditionally-licensed vaccine from Merial to treat oral melanoma—the first approved therapeutic vaccine for the treatment of cancer in either animals or humans, according to the company.
The canine melanoma vaccine, which was made possible through a partnership among Merial, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and The Animal Medical Center of New York, will be available for use by specialists practicing veterinary oncology.
Clinical studies of therapeutic vaccines for oral melanoma conducted by Philip Bergman, DVM, Ph.D., Dipl. ACVIM (Oncology), at the Animal Medical Center of New York from 2000 to present, have included dogs with oral melanoma that ranged from World Health Organization stage II to stage IV.
The enrolled dogs had an estimated life expectancy of one to five months, even after establishing local tumor control with surgery and/or radiation therapy.
Dogs who received this type of vaccine showed increased survival time, according to studies. At the conclusion of one published study of dogs with advanced disease, patients achieved a median survival time of 389 days.
“The development of this vaccine may offer oncologists a new option for treating canine melanoma patients,” said Tim Leard, DVM, Ph.D., director of biologics research and development at Merial. “Beyond surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, oncologists can also consider therapeutic vaccination, which has performed well in extending the lives of dogs with oral melanoma in initial trials.”
The canine melanoma vaccine is designed to be administered in an initial vaccination series of one 0.4 mL dose every two weeks for a total of four doses. Following the initial series, one booster dose is administered every six months.
Merial has also introduced its Canine Transdermal Device, which is a spring-powered device used to inject the vaccine intramuscularly without a needle.
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