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Protocol Details

A Pilot Study of Vaccination with Epitope-Enhanced TARP Peptide and TARP Peptide-Pulsed Dendritic Cells in the Treatment of Stage D0 Prostate Cancer

This study is NOT currently recruiting participants.

Summary | Eligibility | Citations | Contacts




Sponsoring Institute

National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Recruitment Detail

Type: Completed Study; data analyses ongoing
Gender: Male
Min Age: 18 Years
Max Age: N/A

Referral Letter Required


Population Exclusion(s)



Epotope-Enhanced TARP Peptide;
Prostate Cancer;
TARP Peptide-Pulsed Dendritic Cells;

Recruitment Keyword(s)

Prostate Cancer


Prostate Specific Antigens;
Prostate Neoplasms

Investigational Drug(s)

TARP 29-37-9V Peptide Epitope Enchanced Peptide
TARP 27-35 Peptide (Native Peptide)

Investigational Device(s)



Biological/Vaccine: T-cell receptor alternate reading frame protein (TARP) peptide vaccine
Biological/Vaccine: T-cell receptor alternate reading frame protein (TARP) dendritic cell vaccine

Supporting Site

National Cancer Institute


-PSA (prostate specific antigen) is a protein found on normal and cancerous prostate cells. Levels of this protein are used to identify men who are at risk for prostate cancer and to monitor responses to treatment in men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

-Research has shown that men who continue to have an elevated PSA level following primary treatment for prostate cancer are at increased risk for cancer progression. Studies have shown that the change in PSA levels over time, or PSA doubling time (PSADT), can be accurate in predicting how quickly the cancer is likely to progress. Individuals with a PSADT of less than 3 months are at extremely high risk for disease progression and death from prostate cancer. Individuals with a PSADT of greater than 15 months have a very low risk of death from prostate cancer.

-T-cell receptor alternate reading frame protein (TARP) is a protein that is found in about 95% of prostate cancers and is known to stimulate the immune system. The TARP prostate cancer vaccine is made from pieces of the TARP protein called peptides and includes peptides that have been modified to make them more effective at stimulating immunity. Although these TARP peptides have been shown to stimulate the immune systems of mice, information is needed to determine if they also stimulate the immune system in humans. Since it is unclear what is the best way to give peptide vaccines, the TARP peptides will be given with substances known to stimulate the immune system or in a vaccine made with the patient s own cells.


- To determine the immune system s response to vaccination with TARP peptides.

- To determine the safety and toxicity of TARP peptide vaccination.

- To determine if vaccination with the TARP prostate cancer vaccine can slow down PSADT in men with an intermediate PSADT of 3 to 15 months.


- Males 18 years of age and older who have completed their primary treatment for prostate cancer, have stage D0 disease, are HLA A*0201 positive and who have a PSADT greater than 3 and less than 15 months.


- Patients will be randomized to one of two treatment arms:

--Arm A will receive the TARP vaccine with other substances that stimulate the immune system.

--Arm B will receive the TARP vaccine that includes a patient s own white blood cells.

- First week of study, after screening for eligibility has been completed:

--Day 1: Apheresis procedure to extract white blood cells to test the immune response to the vaccine.

--Day 3: Flu vaccine to allow researchers to determine how well a patient s immune system is working.

- Clinic visits in Weeks 3, 6, 9, 12, and 15 for physical examination, blood samples, and administration of the TARP peptide vaccine.

- Physical examination and blood samples only in Weeks 18 and 36.

- Additional blood samples and apheresis procedures in Weeks 24 and 48.

- A 6th dose of TARP peptide vaccine will be administer to those patients who have a response to vaccination at week 24.

- No follow-up or long-term study is associated with this study.

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- Males greater than or equal to 18 years of age with histologically confirmed adenocarcinoma of the prostate.

- HLA-A*201 positive

- Patients must have

- Completed and recovered from all prior definitive therapy (surgery, brachytherapy, cryotherapy or radiotherapy) for the primary tumor, or other definitive-intent local therapy.

- Stage D0 disease with documented biochemical progression documented by a rising PSA.

- No evidence of metastatic disease by physical examination, CT scan or bone scan.

- For patients following definitive radiation therapy or cryotherapy: a rise in PSA of >2ng/mL above the nadir.

- For patients following radical prostatectomy: 2 absolute PSA values > 0.3 ng/mL

- Non-castrate level of testosterone: greater than or equal to 50 ng/dL (prior ADT allowed; must be greater than or equal to 6 months since last dose of ADT).

- A Pre-Enrollment/Baseline PSADT > 3 months and less than or equal to 15 months

- Patients must have greater than or equal to 3 PSA measurements over greater than or equal to 3 months

- The interval between PSA measurements must be greater than or equal to 4 weeks

- For patients receiving 5-alpha reductase inhibitors (5ARI) e.g. finasteride or dutasteride, only PSA values obtained after at least 3 months on therapy may be used to calculate PSADT.

- Performance Status: ECOG 0-2 or Karnofsky 70-100%

- Life expectancy greater than or equal to 1 year.

- Hemoglobin greater than or equal to 10.0 gm/dL, WBC greater than or equal to 2,500/mm(3), ALC greater than or equal to 500/mm3, ANC greater than or equal to 1,000/mm(3), platelet count greater than or equal to 100,000/mm(3).

- PT/PTT less than or equal to 1.5 times ULN unless receiving clinically indicated anticoagulant therapy.

- SGOT/SGPT < 2.5 times ULN, total bilirubin < 1.5 times ULN, Cr < 1.5 times ULN, estimated GFR (eGFR) > 60 ml/min.

- Hepatitis B and C negative, unless the result is consistent with prior vaccination or prior infection with full recovery.

- HIV negative

- No use of investigational agents within 4 weeks of study enrollment.

- No use of immunosuppressive (cytotoxic chemotherapy, systemic steroids) or immunomodulating agents (including IVIG) within 8 weeks of study entry. Note: topical and intranasal steroid therapy is permitted.

- No other concurrent anticancer therapy.

- No alternative medications known to alter PSA (e.g. phytoestrogens and saw palmetto). Note: patients receiving medications for urinary symptoms such as Flomax or 5-alpha reductase inhibitors (finasteride and dutasteride) on a chronic stable dose for at least 3 months are allowed.

- No prior prostate cancer vaccines expressing TARP or HLA A2.

- Able to understand and provide Informed Consent.


- HLA-A*201 negative

- Patients with an active second malignancy other than adequately treated squamous or basal cell carcinoma of the skin, or superficial bladder carcinoma.

- Patients with active infection.

- Patients with brain, visceral or bony metastatic disease.

- Patients in who live attenuated intranasal influenza vaccine (FluMist ) is contraindicated including individuals with asthma or reactive airways disease, cardiovascular or pulmonary disease, chronic metabolic diseases (including diabetes mellitus), renal dysfunction or hemoglobinopathies.

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Stern LJ, Wiley DC. Antigenic peptide binding by class I and class II histocompatibility proteins. Behring Inst Mitt. 1994 Jul;(94):1-10.

Berzofsky JA, Ahlers JD, Belyakov IM. Strategies for designing and optimizing new generation vaccines. Nat Rev Immunol. 2001 Dec;1(3):209-19.

Rivoltini L, Squarcina P, Loftus DJ, Castelli C, Tarsini P, Mazzocchi A, Rini F, Viggiano V, Belli F, Parmiani G. A superagonist variant of peptide MART1/Melan A27-35 elicits anti-melanoma CD8+ T cells with enhanced functional characteristics: implication for more effective immunotherapy. Cancer Res. 1999 Jan 15;59(2):301-6.

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Principal Investigator

Referral Contact

For more information:

Hoyoung M. Maeng, M.D.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
(240) 781-3253

Marissa B. Mallek, R.N.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
National Institutes of Health
Building 10
Room 13N254
10 Center Drive
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
(240) 760-7498

NCI Referral Office
National Institute of Health Clinical Center (CC), 9000 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, United States: NCI Clinical Trials Referral Office

Clinical Trials Number:


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