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Targeting Cancer Stem Cells for Advanced Cancer Immunotherapy

Our Vision is to revolutionize immuno-oncology using iPSC-derived onco-vaccine therapies.

A major advance in cancer therapy

 Although immunotherapies have made immense progress in recent years and can deliver effective treatment for some cancer sufferers, they only provide long term benefits for a small proportion of patients in a limited number of cancers. 

This is because current immunotherapies (RNA, peptides) only induce an immune response against specific antigens found in cancer cells and not all tumor cells can be targeted by the patients immune cells.   In particular, Cancer Stem Cells survive.  These cells are able to grow rapidly which results in tumor growth during / after therapy cessation.

Our cancer vaccine therapy is different.  Ipsirius stem cell-based vaccines induce an immune response against several thousand distinct antigens found in cancer cells, in particular those in CSCs.  This trains the patients immune system to attack a much wider range of tumour cells and eliminate CSCs. The results will be a more effective treatment and less chance of the tumor re-growing after therapy.

As well as engaging the patient’s immune system, IPVAC products will reduce the capacity of tumor cells to evade the immune system (turning cancer cells from “cold” to “hot“) and reduce the ability of the cancer to spread by metastasis. 

Supporting other therapies

IPVAC products will be used in combination with other immunotherapies to target the CSCs and other tumor cells which evade the other therapies.

An “off the shelf” therapy

We are using clinical grade pluripotent stem cell lines which have the capacity to replicate almost indefinitely, to create a pipeline of immunotherapy products (IPVAC) which when administered to a patient will help to eliminate CSCs and reduce the risk of tumor relapse and metastases. 

The same IPVAC product will be used for multiple patients, providing a speedy and cost effective therapy.

 Our first p[roduct, IPVAC 1.0, utilizes engineered stem cells (modified by a proprietary pharmacological treatment) which share embryonic antigens with CSCs.  When administered in the body, IPVAC 1.0 triggers a cytotoxic and memory immune response against embryonic antigens expressed by CSCs which are in common with a large number of cancers and acts on the tumor microenvironment. 

Based on strong pre-clinical data, IPVAC 1.0 will target epithelial cancers with poor prognosis.