ua en ru

Moderna, Merck skin cancer vaccine halves risk of recurrence

Moderna, Merck skin cancer vaccine halves risk of recurrence Moderna, Merck skin cancer vaccine halves risk of recurrence (Vitalii Nosach, RBC-Ukraine)

Moderna and Merck revealed on Thursday that a vaccine offers promising effectiveness in treating the most lethal form of skin cancer, according to CNN and CBS News.

According to the biotech companies, people with severe melanomas who underwent both the vaccine and Merck's cancer drug Keytruda demonstrated a 49% lower likelihood of mortality or cancer recurrence after three years, compared to those solely administered Keytruda.

The results stem from an ongoing randomized trial involving 157 patients with high-risk stage III/IV melanoma, who initially underwent surgery to completely remove cancerous growths. The patients received one milligram of the mRNA vaccine every three weeks for nine doses, in conjunction with 200 milligrams of Keytruda every three weeks for approximately a year, while others received Keytruda alone for a similar duration.

"A two-year follow-up had found a 44% lower risk of recurrence or death and a 65% lower risk of distant metastasis or death in people who got Keytruda and the vaccine, called mRNA-4157/V940, compared with those who got Keytruda alone," CNN says.

The companies have initiated Phase 3 trials for mRNA-4157 with Keytruda for people with stage III and IV melanoma.

Stephane Bancel, Chief Executive Officer of Moderna, says the company is gearing up for the possibility of accelerated approval for personalized therapy by 2025. Moderna is also in the process of constructing a new commercial manufacturing plant in Massachusetts.

Skin cancer in the U.S.

Although melanoma constitutes only 1% of skin cancer cases in the U.S., it is responsible for a majority of skin cancer-related deaths, according to the American Cancer Society. An estimated 97,610 new melanoma cases are diagnosed in the U.S. this year, with 7,990 deaths.

We also reported about 5 ways to prevent cancer and maintain long-term health and a study on the food that enhances the response of immune cells to cancer.