RhoC has been shown to play an important role in metastasising cancer cells. Thus, several lines of evidence demonstrate a high expression of RhoC in cancer cells, and that the metastatic potential of cancer cells depends on expression of RhoC. Increased expression of RhoC correlates with progression and poor prognosis of ductal carcinoma of pancreas, hepatocellular cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, bladder cancer, gastric cancer, esophageal SCC, head and neck SCC, prostate cancer and NSCLC. Microarray analysis has shown that expression of RhoC is progressively increased as tumors become more aggressively metastatic and RhoC expression promotes metastasis. It has been demonstrated that loss of RhoC does not affect tumor development, but decreases tumor cell motility and metastatic cell survival leading to a drastic inhibition of metastasis. Interestingly, RhoC has not been found mutated in cancers, indicating that up-regulated expression is sufficient to contribute to metastasis.
On this background, we studied whether peptides from the RhoC protein elicited spontaneous immune responses in cancer patients. Indeed we characterized a RhoC derived peptide (RV001) that is able to elicit specific spontaneous immune responses in human cancer cell lines and we demonstrated that the RhoC-specific T cells are able to kill tumor cells.
The presentation will discuss plans, data and status on the project to develop a therapeutic cancer vaccine based on the RhoC peptide RV001.
Mr. Ljungqvist received his MSc (Pharm) in 1978 and has since had a long career with LEO Pharma A/S, encompassing manufacture, research and development as well as high level management positions. For 11 years he held the position of Vice President of Regulatory Affairs & QA/QC where he, as part of Product Development, was responsible for regulatory affairs and quality matters as well as being involved in for strategic planning and licensing on corporate level at LEO Pharma.
During his more than 30 years of experience within the pharmaceutical business he has served on a number of boards of directors in biotech companies and he held the position as chairman of the board of directors for SurVac Aps, which was sold in 2006. Furthermore, Mr. Ljungqvist is advisor to the pharmaceutical and bio-pharmaceutical industry in USA, Canada and Europe on matters relating to Regulatory Affairs, QA/QC and Project Development.
He is the founder of RQ Solutions ApS, specializing in consultancy to the pharmaceutical as well as biotech companies.
Mr. Ljungqvist is a co-founder of RhoVac ApS where he holds the position of CEO.