Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s 4th Annual

Personalized Cancer Vaccines

Advancing Personalized and Combination Immunotherapy

August 8-9, 2019

Recent developments in personalized cancer vaccines are enabling the next generation of rational cancer immunotherapy. Cancer vaccines may now be combined with other immunotherapies, dendritic cells used for personalized immunotherapy, and neoantigens on the surface of cancer cells targeted, matching vaccine components to each patient. mRNA- and DNA-based vaccines present an additional opportunity for cancer therapeutics. Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s Fourth Annual Personalized Cancer Vaccines conference will cover applications in several types of cancer and progress in the understanding of the immune system that has significantly advanced the potential of cancer vaccines.

Final Agenda



7:45 am Registration Open and Morning Coffee

Harbor II


PANEL DISCUSSION: Partnering and Licensing in Immuno-Oncology

Big pharma and biotech are under pressure to compete in the booming Immuno-Oncology market and to capitalize on new technologies and innovations to bring next-generation immunotherapies to the patients. This insider panel will share what they look for in a partner or investment, and discuss opportunities for collaboration or in-licensing of novel immunotherapies, IO targets or biomarkers, and potential combination therapies.


Griffith_MelindaMelinda Griffith, JD

Vice President, Strategic Alliances; Chief Legal Counsel, Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy






Michael Woo, MBA

Head, Search & Evaluation, Immuno-Oncology, Business Development & Licensing, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research, Inc.





Kathryn McCabe, PhD

Senior Director, Business Development, Emerging Technology and Innovation, Eli Lilly and Company





Scott M. DeWire, PhD

Global Head, Business Development and Licensing, Cancer Immunology, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.





Philip Arlen, MD

President & CEO, Precision Biologics






9:30 Coffee Break in the Exhibit Hall. Last chance for poster viewing.

Harbor III

10:10 Chairperson’s Opening Remarks

Jay A. Berzofsky, MD, PhD, Chief, Vaccine Branch, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute

10:15 Th17 T Helper Cell Vaccines for Treatment and Prevention of Cancer

Knutson_KeithKeith Knutson, PhD, Professor, Immunology, Director, Immunology & Immunotherapy Program, Mayo Clinic

In ovarian cancer (OC), IL-17-producing T cells (Th17s) predict improved survival. We developed a method whereby autologous dendritic cells can be programmed to induce Th17 responses to OC antigens. In both preclinical and clinical vaccination studies, results demonstrate that durable tumor-antigen-specific Th17s can be generated. Vaccination led to greatly improved progression free survival in murine models and in humans. Additional studies demonstrate strong synergistic efficacy when used with immune checkpoint blockade.

10:45 KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Autologous Dendritic Cell Vaccines for Prostate and HER2-Expressing Cancers

Jay A. Berzofsky, MD, PhD, Chief, Vaccine Branch, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute

We have developed several cancer vaccines based on use of autologous dendritic cells (DCs) presenting the vaccine antigen. One vaccine targets prostate cancer with peptide epitopes from the prostate cancer antigen TARP, modified by epitope enhancement to improve immunogenicity. The second targets tumors expressing HER2, including breast, colon, ovarian, gastric, prostate, lung, and others, using an adenovirus expressing part of HER2 to transduce the DCs. The strategy is designed to bypass poor DC maturation in cancer patients by maturing the DCs ex vivo, and in the case of the Ad-HER2, to avoid neutralization by anti-adenovirus antibodies. Factors that promote DC efficacy have also been analyzed. Both vaccines show promise in early clinical trials.

11:15 Use of Enveloped Virus-Like Particles (eVLPs) in Immuno-Oncology

Anderson_DavidDavid E. Anderson, PhD, CSO, VBI Vaccines

The talk will summarize the strong potency observed thus far in a Phase I/IIa trial with VBI-1901, an eVLP-based vaccine against glioblastoma. New preclinical data will highlight the ability to express a variety of immunomodulatory molecules on the surface of eVLPs to further enhance potency and shape anti-tumor immunity.

11:45 pm Enjoy Lunch on Your Own

12:45 Session Break

Harbor III

1:40 Chairperson’s Remarks

Pamela Carroll, PhD, Senior Vice President, Immuno-Oncology, Genocea Biosciences


1:45 How to Identify a Good Tumor Rejection Mediating Neoepitope

Srivastava_PramodPramod Srivastava, MD, PhD, Director, Carole and Ray Neag Comprehensive Cancer Center & Professor of Immunology and Medicine, University of Connecticut School of Medicine

It is relatively straightforward to identify the somatic mutations in individual cancers. However, an overwhelming majority of these mutations do not lead to generation of neoepitopes that can be recognized by the immune system in a manner that an effective anti-tumor immune response can be generated. I shall present new results on the rules for identification of true anti-cancer neoepitopes.

2:15 A Universal Early Cancer Screen Using a Blood-Based 400K Frameshift Peptide Array

Katz_YisraelYisrael Katz, MD, CMO, Calviri; Center for Innovations in Medicine, Arizona Biodesign Institute

Our group has invented a 400K peptide array representing all potential immunogenic frameshift antigens produced by cancer cells. The assay is serologic, requiring <1mL of blood, no tissue or sequencing, and simultaneously interprets a diagnostic signature for multiple early-stage cancers with high accuracy. Cost is substantially lower than DNA-based technologies and results are obtained in a few hours. In multiple stage I and pre-stage I (blood collected 0-6 months prior to a cancer diagnosis) breast cancer and melanoma cohorts, accuracy of the test ranged from 85%-99%, representing an unparalleled improvement over existing screening modalities. This technology represents a major leap in the world of immuno-oncology and early cancer diagnostics, as it enables a single study to simultaneously and rapidly detect pre-clinical disease in multiple cancer types with high accuracy and low cost. Furthermore, the reactive frameshift peptide signatures can be directly translated into targets for therapeutic cancer vaccines, define MSI status, and predict response or adverse event risk to immunotherapy.

2:45 Refreshment Break

3:15 Identifying and Characterizing Neoantigens for Optimized Immunotherapies

Jessica Baker-Flechtner, PhD, CSO, Genocea Biosciences

Genocea’s ATLASTM platform is a powerful tool that screens all candidate neoantigens for pre-existing patient-specific CD4+ or CD8+ stimulatory and inhibitory responses in an HLA agnostic assessment. Excluding inhibitory peptides that may suppress tumor immunity, accelerate tumor progression and mediate patient response to immune checkpoint blockade therapies could enable best-in-class immunotherapies. Genocea is applying ATLAS in its two lead programs: GEN-009, a neoantigen vaccine currently being evaluated in Phase 1/2a clinical trials, and GEN-011, a personalized non-engineered T cell therapy program that targets multiple neoantigens.

 3:45 KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Functional Identification and Therapeutic Targeting of Cancer Neoantigens

Stephen P. Schoenberger, PhD, Co-Director, San Diego Center for Precision Immunotherapy; Professor, La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology

This presentation will describe a novel approach developed to identify the subset of expressed cancer mutations that can be recognized by a patient’s own immune system and which can form the basis for personalized immunotherapy by either vaccination or adoptive cellular therapy.

4:15 NEW: Neoantigen Vaccination for Glioblastoma: Getting Personal

David A. Reardon, MD, Clinical Director, Center for Neuro-Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; Professor, Medicine, Harvard Medical School

4:45 Close of Day



8:30 am Breakout Discussion Groups with Continental Breakfast

Harbor III

9:30 Chairperson’s Remarks

Nathaniel Wang, PhD, Head of R&D, Synthetic Genomics, Inc.

9:35 Immunogenic Intensification – An Emerging Strategy to Enhance Cancer Immunotherapy

Bilusic_MarijoMarijo Bilusic, MD, PhD, Associate Research Physician, Program Director, NIH Hematology Oncology Fellowship, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health

Preclinical studies have demonstrated that the combination of cancer vaccines and checkpoint inhibitors has synergistic effects. Cancer vaccines activate T cells, direct them to the tumor and increase PD-L1 expression within the tumor microenvironment. Vaccines should enhance immune response and, with concurrent blockade of inhibitory pathways, could also achieve optimal antitumor effects. Combinations of cancer vaccines and immune checkpoint inhibitors are currently being studied in clinical trials. Early results suggest that it is possible to combine immune agents with manageable side effects, while inducing anti-tumor activity in some patients. Combinations of cancer vaccine and immune checkpoint inhibitor may prove of significant added therapeutic benefit by immunogenic intensification.

10:05 Adenovirus Vectored Vaccines Targeting Multiple Neoantigens Synergize with Immune Checkpoint Inhibition to Eradicate Large Tumors

Scarselli_ElisaElisa Scarselli, CSO, Nouscom AG

Nouscom developed Gorilla Adenovirus vectored vaccines (GAds) with the capacity to encode multiple neoantigens. Experiments in murine cancer models demonstrated that GAd vaccination is very effective in early therapeutic settings, while it is not able to control tumor growth in the presence of high tumor burden. In this setting, the combination of GAd vaccine and anti-PD-1 broadens the repertoire of intra-tumor T cells and cures more animals than anti-PD-1 monotherapy.

10:35 Synthetic Self-Replicating RNA Platforms for Shared Neoantigen and Multidimensional Combination Therapeutics

Wang_NathanielNathaniel Wang, PhD, Head of R&D, Synthetic Genomics, Inc.

RNA as a vaccine and therapeutic modality has become a focus of significant interest. Synthetically Modified Alpha Replicon RNA Technologies (SMARRT) are capable of targeting neoantigens as a vaccine platform as well as co-expression of immunomodulatory molecules such as cytokines and antibodies for therapeutics. As a vaccine platform, SMARRT generates a high magnitude, polyfunctional Class I and Class II T cell response. Using this platform to target different classes of shared neoantigens in combination with immune modulators represents the next wave of multidimensional combination therapies.

11:05 Key Learnings from Bringing a Fully Personalized Cancer Neoantigen Vaccine into the Clinic

Fredriksen_AgneteAgnete Fredriksen, PhD, CSO, Vaccibody

Vaccibody has a unique platform technology able to potentiate DNA vaccines by attracting, activating and delivering antigens to antigen presenting cells. Positive clinical results have been proven with a therapeutic HPV vaccine in a phase I/IIa. The platform allows rapid and cost-effective manufacturing perfect to develop commercially viable patient-specific vaccines on demand. A Phase I testing Vaccibody neoantigen vaccine in advanced cancer patients receiving anti-PD/PD-L1 therapy was initiated in 2018.

11:35 am Close of Conference

Preliminary Agenda

Conference Programs