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Clinical Trial Using Immunotherapy For Dogs With Transitional Cell Carcinoma

Jun 1, 2017

Transitional cell carcinoma (TCC) is the most common type of bladder cancer in dogs. Most dogs with TCC initially show signs such as straining to urinate, increased frequency of urination, or blood in the urine. As the tumor grows, it obstructs the flow of urine, which can become life-threatening. TCC can also spread to nearby lymph nodes, lungs, and bones. In most cases, TCC of the bladder cannot be cured.

Common treatment options include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), chemotherapy, stent placement, or radiation therapy. Most dogs with TCC of the bladder succumb to their cancer within 6 to 8 months of diagnosis.

Recently, a tumor protein called V600E B-Raf has been identified in up to 87% of dogs with TCC. This clinical trial is evaluating a bacterial vaccine that encourages the immune system to target the V600E B-Raf protein. We aim to determine if this vaccine is safe, and if it can delay tumor growth or spread and extend survival in dogs with TCC.

Inclusion criteria:

  • Dogs with TCC of the bladder that is positive for the V600E mutation
  • Dogs that weigh >10 kg.
  • Dogs that are otherwise healthy with a life expectancy of at least 2 months.

Exclusion criteria:

  • Dogs with significant concurrent health problems.
  • Dogs with distant metastasis at screening.
  • Dogs who have previously had a urethral or ureteral stent placed.
  • Dogs with partial or complete urethral or ureteral obstruction.

The study will pay for:

  • Urine test to evaluate for presence of the V600E B-Raf mutation.
  • All visits and clinical and diagnostic tests associated with the clinical trial.
  • Cystoscopy with tumor biopsy.
  • The study vaccine.
  • Treatment of any side effects associated with the study vaccine

Contact Information:

Dr. Nicola Mason
Phone: 215-898-3996
Email: njmason@upenn.edu