Robert H. Vonderheide, MD, D Phil, experimental vaccine a step toward curing cancer


October 6, 2009

Baltimore Sun

Discoveries by the newest Nobel laureates in Physiology or Medicine have led to advances toward potential treatment for certain types of cancer and for a growing list of diseases rooted in malfunctions of the DNA-protecting enzyme, calling telomerase, that the laureates discovered. In cancer, the overproduction of telomerase enables tumor cells to maintain unchecked reproduction, and researchers are trying to inhibit telomerase as a way to shut down the tumor and allow it to die. The work of Robert H. Vonherheide, MD, D Phil, associate professor of Medicine, is mentioned in an article in the Baltimore Sun, stating that he has reported some preliminiary success with a telomerase vaccine. The experimental vaccine is designed to prompt the body's own immune system to attack telmerase in patients with metastatic breast cancer. the vaccine led to "widespread" cell death in the tumors he reported... Read More