A team of scientists from leading genetic research-and-data-based diagnostic company MedGenome India and US, along with an international team of researchers from institutions in the US, India, South Korea, Chile and Australia, has reported sequencing and analysis of over 150 gallbladder cancer (GBC) samples.
The identification of these new samples could pave way for new targeted therapies, including vaccines for treating this cancer. Currently, there are no targeted therapies for treating gallbladder cancer. The new study has been published in Nature Communications.
GBC in the US has a higher incidence among Southwestern Native Americans and Mexican Americans. It is more prevalent in South American countries that include Chile, Bolivia, and Ecuador, and in Asian countries such as Korea, India, Pakistan and Japan.The team performed a comprehensive genomic analysis and identified several targetable genomic alterations. In particular they identified frequent alterations of the ELF3 gene. They show that the mutated peptides derived from ELF3 have the potential for use as a cancer vaccine to treat GBC patients carrying alteration in this gene.
The study also reports a new class of hypermutated mismatch deficient GBCs that will likely respond to check-point inhibitors.
According to Eric Stawiski, vice president (Bioinformatics) at MedGenome, and the co-communicating author of the new research paper, this work deepens the understanding of the underlying genomics of GBC, including the identification of new pathways, immune microenvironment and actionable mutations.
Appreciating the MedGenome team and its collaborators on this landmark study that offers new insight and opportunities for combating GBC, Rayman Mathoda, CEO, MedGenome US, said,“Applying our proprietary OncoPept platform, our scientists were able to show the potential for use of ELF3-derived mutant peptides as a cancer vaccine for treating GBC and shows the value of the platform for the identification of cancer vaccine candidates.
“Applying our proprietary OncoPept platform, our scientists were able to show the potential for use of ELF3-derived mutant peptides as a cancer vaccine for treating GBC and shows the value of the platform for the identification of cancer vaccine candidates,” she added.