WARF: P06004US

Prostate Cancer and Melanoma Screening


Douglas McNeel, Edward Dunphy, Jason Dubovsky, Luke Hoeppner

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) is seeking commercial partners interested in developing a minimally invasive method of screening for prostate cancer or melanoma and a method for determining if an anti-cancer immune therapy is effective.
OVERVIEWAlmost 200,000 men in the United States develop prostate cancer each year. More than 60,000 people develop melanoma. Early diagnosis is key to survival because the best treatment and prognosis for these diseases depends on early detection. However, diagnostic procedures, such as biopsies or imaging tests, are often invasive and uncomfortable.
THE INVENTIONUW-Madison researchers have developed a minimally invasive method of screening for prostate cancer or melanoma. They identified a number of antigens to which patients with prostate cancer or melanoma have developed antibody immune responses. The antigens may provide clinicians with new tools for the diagnosis and monitoring of prostate cancer or melanoma. A blood sample from a patient can be tested against a panel of the prostate cancer or melanoma antigens. An immune reaction to any member of the panel might indicate the patient needs further examination.

The researchers also developed a method for determining if an anti-cancer immune therapy is effective. Anti-tumor vaccines stimulate the immune system to form antibodies against tumor cells, delaying the onset or progression of cancer. The panel of antigens can be used to determine if an immune therapy, either antigen-specific or non-antigen-specific, has elicited responses to other antigens and might therefore be an effective therapy. In addition, the antigens themselves may serve as targets for antigen-specific immune therapies.
  • Diagnosing prostate cancer or melanoma
  • Determining if an immune therapy elicited a tumor-specific immune response
  • Identifying candidate compounds for the prevention or treatment of melanoma
  • May lead to non-invasive tests for prostate cancer or melanoma
  • Can help determine if prostate cancer or melanoma has recurred
For More Information About the Inventors
Contact Information
For current licensing status, please contact Andy DeTienne at or 608-960-9857.
The WARF Advantage

Since its founding in 1925 as the patenting and licensing organization for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, WARF has been working with business and industry to transform university research into products that benefit society. WARF intellectual property managers and licensing staff members are leaders in the field of university-based technology transfer. They are familiar with the intricacies of patenting, have worked with researchers in relevant disciplines, understand industries and markets, and have negotiated innovative licensing strategies to meet the individual needs of business clients.