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Moffitt Physician-Scientist demonstrates Proligna enhances immune response

Tampa, FL (July 2008) - A new research study performed by Dr. Esteban Celis, a professor at the Moffitt Cancer Research Center, shows that Allera’s Proligna pinecone extract, when administered daily to mice in their drinking water, promotes an enhanced immune response to a protein vaccine. Dr. Celis showed that, in some instances, the continuous oral administration of PPC significantly enhanced the generation of antigen specific T cells in a dose dependent manner. Additional studies are underway to optimize this enhanced response and to investigate the widespread use of Proligna pinecone extract with additional vaccines, including those directed against melanoma cancer.

Dr. Esteban Celis is a professor in the Immunology and Immunotherapy Program at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute.

Prior to joining Moffitt, Dr. Celis received his M.D. and Ph.D. from the National University of Mexico. He has worked in biotechnology companies and as a professor at the Mayo Clinic. In 2005, he worked at Louisiana State University until Hurricane Katrina forced an unexpected career move to Moffitt.
Celis is recognized for his contributions to the understanding of the basic biology of T cells against cancer. He has written more than 100 research articles and is the associate editor of Cancer Research. Celis is the former associate editor and the current section editor of The Journal of Immunology. He is on the Board of Scientific Counselors at the National Cancer Institute; a member of the American Association of Immunologists and the Clinical Immunology Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

In 2001, the National Cancer Institute awarded Moffitt the status of a Comprehensive Cancer Center in recognition of its excellence in research and contributions to clinical trials, prevention and cancer control. Additionally, Moffitt is a member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, a prestigious alliance of the country’s leading cancer centers, and is listed in the U.S. News & World Report as one of the top cancer hospitals in America. Moffitt’s sole mission is to contribute to the prevention and cure of cancer.