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Conjoint Grant - 2019

Pipeline to de-risk the design and generation of personalised cancer immunotherapies to treat Oropharyngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma patients (OPSCC).

“New-era” for personalized health care for Head and Neck cancer treatment
Dr Jazmina Gonzalez Cruz & Associate Professor Christopher Perry

Project Description

The incidence of throat cancer is rising globally, especially in young people. In Queensland, a type of throat cancer called Oropharyngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OPSCC) has increased by 11% in just 4 years. The main causative agent of this type of head and neck cancer is Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. Unfortunately, current HPV vaccines are ineffective in patients who have already contracted HPV. Our research project will capitalise on our exclusive access to a state-of-the-art technique developed in Denmark, that will allow us to create a novel and straightforward pipeline to design and manufacture personalised cancer vaccines in order to treat throat cancers caused by HPV. We will become the first group in the world to generate immune-based therapies for OPSCC containing patient-specific tumour fragments known to activate the patient’s own immune cells. The expected outcomes include better treatment options for throat cancer patients and the reinforcement of Australia’s position as world-leader in the fight against HPV-driven cancers.

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