GVAX lung cancer vaccine

Definition / meaning of GVAX lung cancer vaccine

An autologous lung cancer vaccine consisting of patient-specific lung cancer cells genetically modified to secrete granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF), an immunostimulatory cytokine. GM-CSF modulates the proliferation and differentiation of a variety of hematopoietic progenitor cells with some specificity towards stimulation of leukocyte production and may reverse treatment-induced neutropenias. This agent also promotes antigen presentation, up-regulates antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC), and increases interleukin-2-mediated lymphokine-activated killer cell function and may augment host antitumoral immunity. For safety, cells are irradiated prior to vaccination.

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The Web site of the National Cancer Institute (http://www.cancer.gov/)

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