Cancer exhibits adaptive features typical of complex systems, like resilience and robustness to environmental challenges through the emergent co-evolution of its components. These events promote carcinogenesis through dynamic interactions among numerous components and subsystems, including the immune system. During the past decade, our research group has provided substantial evidence that the peptide GK-1 has important immunomodulatory properties. In elderly mice, GK-1 acts as a potent adjuvant of the influenza vaccine through a mechanism that involves the activation of antigen-presenting cells (APCs) and an increased production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines (IFN-γ, TNFα, CCL2). To date, there is solid evidence supporting the antitumoral properties of GK-1 in murine cancer models. First, a lower occurrence and smaller size of spontaneous bronchiolar adenomas were found in elderly GK-1-treated mice compared to paired untreated mice. In two independent studies, GK-1 treatment reduced tumor growth and increased mouse survival in a murine model of melanoma and breast tumor. In the former model, a synergy between GK-1 and anti-PD-L1 treatment was observed, while in the latter, GK-1 alone controlled the metastatic burden. The effective activation of APCs induced by GK-1, restoring the antitumor-specific immunity, may underlie some of its antineoplastic effects.
Part of the book: Cancer Survivorship
Parasitic diseases fecally transmitted, such taeniasis/cysticercosis Taenia solium binomial, represent a health problem whose incidence continues due to the prevalence of inadequate sanitary conditions, particularly in developing countries. When the larval stage of the parasite is established in the central nervous system causes neurocysticercosis a disease than can severely affect human health. It can also affect pigs causing cysticercosis causing economic losses. Since pigs are obligatory intermediate hosts, they have been considered as the targets for vaccination to interrupt the transmission of the parasitosis and eventually reduce the disease. Progress has been made in the development of vaccines for the prevention of porcine cysticercosis. In our research group, three peptides have been identified that, expressed synthetically (S3Pvac) or recombinantly (S3Pvac-phage), reduced the amount of cysticerci by 98.7% and 87%, respectively, in pigs exposed to natural conditions of infection. Considering that cysticercosis is orally acquired, it seems feasible to develop an edible vaccine, which could be administered by the pig farmers, simplifying the logistical difficulties of its application, reducing costs, and facilitating the implementation of vaccination programs. This chapter describes the most important advances towards the development of an oral vaccine against porcine cysticercosis.
Part of the book: Current State of the Art in Cysticercosis and Neurocysticercosis