Friday, December 26, 2014

Veterinary Highlights: Bone Cancer Vaccine Update

There is an encouraging update on the bone cancer immunotherapy clinical trial at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine.

It is now over 16 months since the first dog diagnosed with spontaneous osteosarcoma received an experimental bone cancer vaccine.

With current standard of care, that consists of amputation and follow up chemotherapy, median survival times are between 200 and 300 days.

The aim of the vaccine, given to dogs after amputation and chemotherapy, is to prevent metastatic disease and prolong overall survival.

Of the first 5 dogs vaccinated in this clinical trial, 4 of the dogs are still alive and have survived between 500 and 590 days; three of these dogs are tumor free. 

The result suggest that the vaccine is able to stimulate an effective anti-tumor immune response that is able to kill microscopic metastatic cells and prevent tumor recurrence in these dogs.

Just as importantly, the vaccine appears to be safe. 

Only low-grade toxicities consisting of a mild fever and occasionally one episode of vomiting the same day as vaccination have been reported. There have been no long or short-term complications observed with the vaccine.

The results are highly promising and a larger phase II clinical trial is now being planned.

If you would like to learn more about the clinical trial, are interested in enrolling your dog, or wish to support Dr. Mason's research, visit

Source article:
Dr. Nicola Mason Bone Cancer Vaccine update

Further reading:
Dr. Mason's Canine Cancer Studies

Related articles:
Bone Cancer Immunotherapy Clinical Trial


  1. Wow! That's amazing. I've never heard of this vaccine. Thanks for the update.

    1. It's still in clinical trials stage but I think it's a great idea and seems to be showing great promise. Hopefully, this type of treatment might eventually replace chemo etc in the first place.