Woman at Pittsburgh hospital becomes first to receive vaccine for early-stage breast cancer

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A woman from the North Hills became the first to receive a newly developed vaccine for early-stage breast cancer.

The milestone moment was held at UPMC Magee Women’s Hospital on Thursday.

Researchers hope this will hope prevent progression of the disease.

The vaccine, given in three doses, was developed over decades of research by the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC Hillman Cancer Center immunologist Dr. Olivera Finn.

A clinical trial is now underway to evaluate how well the immune systems of women newly diagnosed with the earliest form of breast cancer respond to the vaccine.

Previous research has focused on testing vaccines in the setting of advanced breast cancers. 

This new study, the first in early breast cancer, is expected to determine if the vaccine can induce a strong immune response that could prevent early breast cancer recurrence or progression to invasive breast cancer.

Around one in five new breast cancers will be diagnosed with this form and is typically detected during a mammogram. 

For more information on this trial, call UPMC Surgical Oncology at (412)-641-3488 or click here.

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