Vaccination with a bivalent GM2 and GD2 ganglioside conjugate vaccine: A trial comparing doses of GD2-keyhole limpet hemocyanin
Immunization with GMK vaccine (G(M2) ganglioside conjugated to keyhole limpet hemocyanin mixed with QS-21 adjuvant) induces anti-G(M2) antibodies in close to 100% of patients. We found previously that anti-G(D2) antibodies could be induced in some patients using G(D2)-keyhole limpet hemocyanin + QS-21 (GDK). In this trial, we wished: (a) to determine whether immunization with both GMK and GDK vaccines could induce antibodies against both G(M2) and G(D2); and (b) to determine the optimal dose of GDK. Thirty-one patients with melanoma or sarcoma who had no evidence of disease after complete surgical resection were immunized with both GMK (30 microg of G(M2)) and GDK on weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 12, 24, and 36. Patients were assigned to one of five GDK dose levels (3, 10, 30, 70, or 130 microg of G(D2)). Anti-G(M2) IgM or IgG were induced in 97% of patients. The dose of GDK did not affect the anti-G(M2) response, although at the highest GDK dose level, 3 of 7 patients did not make anti-G(M2) IgG. GDK was less immunogenic; overall 45% of patients developed either IgM or IgG against G(D2). At GDK doses of 30 or 70 microg, 8 of 11 patients (73%) made either IgM or IgG anti-G(D2) antibodies. We conclude that both GMK and GDK vaccines can induce antibodies against G(M2) and G(D2) in a majority of patients and are safe. The optimal dose of GDK appears to be either 30 or 70 microg when administered with GMK vaccine.