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Her-2/CEA cancer vaccine
Drug Names(s): Her-2/CEA cancer vaccine
Description: This DNA vaccine is based on Vical's DNA gene delivery technology and uses plasmid DNA (pDNA) encoding human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER-2) and carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA). Her-2 and CEA are tumor antigens that are all expressed in a variety of cancers. The HER-2 gene is part of a family of genes that play roles in regulating cell growth. The protein it makes is a tyrosine kinase growth factor receptor that a number of normal tissues express and which probably has a role in normal cell function, regulating growth and proliferation. CEA is a glycoprotein involved in cell adhesion and is present in very small quantities in adult tissue. CEA is normally found in a fetus which, when found at elevated levels in the blood of adults, may indicate the presence of cancer. CEA is therefore called a tumor marker.
Deal Structure: In 1991, Vical and Merck entered into an agreement, which was subsequently amended, providing Merck with certain exclusive rights to develop and commercialize vaccines using Vical's core DNA delivery technology for certain human diseases. Under the agreement, as amended, Merck licensed preventive and therapeutic human infectious disease vaccines for HIV, hepatitis C virus, and hepatitis B virus using Vical's core DNA delivery technology. In November 2005, Vical announced the receipt of a $1.0 million milestone payment from Merck.
Partners: Merck & Co., Inc.
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