Dr. Robert Amato, DO is Associate Professor of Medicine at Baylor college of Medicine, Houston, TX. He received his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine from Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine where he also did postgraduate training followed by a four year fellowship in medical oncology at the U. of Texas MDAnderson Cancer Center. He does extensive research, and has 76 journal papers plus 89 published abstracts.
Stress Proteins, also called heat shock proteins, are used to try to activate the immune system. These proteins are ubiquitous in the body. They complex with tumor antigens and act as "natural adjuvants". Dr. Amato says patient selection is critical for this therapy. Uses glucose regulated proteins gp96. The goal is enhanced T Cell stimulatory response. He described it as effective in micro-metastatic disease, however it only slows bulky tumors.
Clinical trial as an adjuvant therapy: 60 institutions worldwide are involved in the trial. It is directed at high risk patients: Those with node involvement, Gerota's fascia involvement, or vascular involvement.
At Baylor the adjuvant trials are testing:
The primary tumor must be intact to enroll in trial.
Baylor also has a clinical trial for metastatic patients starting, and next year will begin a trial of vaccine+thalidomide.