COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation.
Get the latest public health information from CDC:

Get the latest research information from NIH: Menu

Fecal Microbial Transplantation in Combination With Immunotherapy in Melanoma Patients (MIMic)

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Know the risks and potential benefits of clinical studies and talk to your health care provider before participating. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT03772899
Recruitment Status : Recruiting
First Posted : December 11, 2018
Last Update Posted : June 27, 2019
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Lawson Health Research Institute

Brief Summary:

Immunotherapy has helped many cancer patients in the last 5 years by enhancing a patient's immune system to fight cancer. Anti-Programmed Death (PD-1) immunotherapy drugs such as pembrolizumab and nivolumab remove the breaks from cancer-fighting immune cells and have been effective in treating some melanoma patients. Despite the major breakthrough of immunotherapy in oncology treatment, many patients do not respond to this new class of anti-cancer drugs. Recently, evidence suggests that the microorganisms living in a patient's intestines play a major role in modifying the response to anti-PD-1drugs. Patients who respond to these drugs have a unique and healthy group of microorganisms in their gut. Therefore, positive modification of a cancer patient's gut microorganisms to create a more diverse and healthy microbiome may improve the response to immunotherapy. One method of modifying the microbiome is Fecal Microbial Transplantation (FMT) that is already being successfully used in the clinic to treat non-cancer patients with persistent bacterial infections.

In this study, the investigators will combine FMT with the approved immunotherapy drugs pembrolizumab or nivolumab that are the standard of care for the treatment of advanced melanoma. The purpose of this study is to examine the safety of combining these two therapies in melanoma patients. The investigator will use fecal material from a healthy donor selected via our stringent protocol that is Health Canada approved. In addition to assessing the safety of the combination, the investigator will also study the effect of FMT on the immune system and microbial ecosystem of the gut.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Melanoma Drug: Fecal Microbial Transplantation Phase 1

Layout table for study information
Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 20 participants
Allocation: N/A
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Fecal Microbial Transplantation in Combination With Immunotherapy in Melanoma Patients (MIMic)
Actual Study Start Date : March 27, 2019
Estimated Primary Completion Date : December 2023
Estimated Study Completion Date : December 2023

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Intervention Details:
  • Drug: Fecal Microbial Transplantation

    All patients in this trial will receive FMT at least one week prior to treatment with approved immunotherapy (either pembrolizumab or nivolumab). Samples for FMT are sourced at and by the microbiology group under the supervision of Dr. Silverman at St Joseph's Hospital. Donor screening procedures are described in appendix 4. Transplant will be from one single donor for all participants unless Dr. Silverman's lab considers the need for more than one donor based on availability of donors. There will be no "mixture" of donor samples.

    Donor samples are manufactured into capsules according to Kao et al, 2017.

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. To evaluate the safety of combining Fecal Microbial Transplantation (FMT) using intestinal bacteria existing in the stool of healthy donors with immunotherapy in melanoma patients. [ Time Frame: 60 months ]
    Toxicity assessments and concurrent medication review will occur at every visit throughout immunotherapy treatment. Any adverse events after FMT administration will be followed until resolution or until judged stable by the investigator.

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Assess Objective Response Rate [ Time Frame: At baseline and every 12 weeks thereafter up to 60 months ]
    To evaluate whether combination of FMT and immunotherapy can enhance antitumor effect in melanoma patients by assessing the objective response rate (ORR; the rate of complete response plus partial response) as per the RECIST 1.1 criteria including immune-related response criteria.

  2. To Evaluate the effect(s) combination FMT and immunotherapy has on the gut microbiome [ Time Frame: At baseline, prior to 1st dose of immunotherapy (1 week post FMT) and 2nd dose of immunotherapy (2, 3, or 4 weeks post FMT depending on type of immunotherapy received), and at the 3 month follow-up visit ]
    Stool sample for microbiome analysis will be collected in the form of used (visibly soiled) toilet paper packed in a labeled biohazard bad and brought with the participant to clinic. The stool sample can be obtained by the patient from a bowel movement up to 3 days prior to the visit.

  3. Evaluate the effect(s) combination FMT and immunotherapy has on changes in immune blood biomarkers [ Time Frame: At baseline, prior to 1st dose of immunotherapy (1 week post FMT) and 2nd dose of immunotherapy(2, 3, or 4 weeks post FMT depending on type of immunotherapy received), and at the 3 month follow-up visit ]
    For study specific testing, we will also isolate lymphocytes from the peripheral blood using ficoll and examine the level of circulating CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, dividing CD8+ T cells (Ki67+CD3+CD8+ T cells), levels of checkpoint molecules including PD-1, PD-L1, TIM-3, LAG-3, TIGIT and BTLA on CD8+ T cells, and other immune markers such as HLA-DR CD38, and CD28 using flow cytometry.

  4. Evaluate the effect(s) combination FMT and immunotherapy has on patient's metabolomics [ Time Frame: At baseline, prior to 1st dose of immunotherapy (1 week post FMT) and 2nd dose of immunotherapy (2, 3, or 4 weeks post FMT depending on type of immunotherapy received), and at the 3 month follow-up visit ]
    A urine sample will be collected for metabolomics analysis.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

Layout table for eligibility information
Ages Eligible for Study:   19 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Patients must be 18-years old or older
  • Patients must have a confirmed diagnosis of unresectable or metastatic cutaneous melanoma (BRAF wild type or mutant)
  • Patients with ECOG performance of 0-2
  • Patients must be able to provide written informed consent and understand the infectious risks associated with FMT administration
  • Must understand non-infectious risks associated with FMT administration
  • Ability to ingest capsules
  • Understand that data regarding the long-term safety risk of FMT are lacking
  • Patients receiving systemic steroids at physiologic doses are permitted to enroll assuming steroid dose is not above the acceptable threshold (> 10 mg prednisone daily or equivalent)
  • Have measurable disease as per RECIST version 1.1

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Pregnant or breastfeeding, or expecting to conceive or father children within the projected duration of the trial, starting with the pre-screening or screening visit through 120 days after the last dose of trial treatment.
  • Current or recent [in the last 90 days] exposure to high dose oral or IV corticosteroids

    o Patients who require intermittent use of bronchodilators or local steroid injections are not excluded from the study

  • Has a diagnosis of immunodeficiency (e.g. HIV, transplantation) or receiving systemic steroid therapy (>10mg prednisone daily or equivalent) or any other form of immunosuppressive therapy prior to trial treatment
  • Ongoing use of antibiotics or previous use of antibiotics in the last two weeks prior to the FMT procedure
  • Presence of a chronic intestinal disease (e.g. Celiac, malabsorption, colonic tumor)
  • Presence of absolute contra-indications to FMT administration

    • Toxic megacolon
    • Severe dietary allergies (e.g. shellfish, nuts, seafood)
    • Inflammatory bowel disease
    • Anatomic contra-indications to colonoscopy
  • Expected to require any other form of systemic or localized anti-neoplastic therapy while on study
  • Has a known history of a hematologic malignancy, primary brain tumor or sarcoma, or of another primary solid tumor, unless the patient has undergone potentially curative therapy with no evidence of that disease for five years

    o NOTE: This time requirement also does not apply to patients who underwent successful definitive resection of basal or squamous cell carcinoma of the skin, superficial bladder cancer, in situ cancers including cervical cancer, breast cancer, melanoma, or other in situ cancers.

  • Active central nervous system (CNS) metastases and/or leptomeningeal involvement
  • Patients with leptomeningeal disease (leptomeningeal enhancement on MRI/CT imaging and/or positive CSF cytology)
  • Has an active autoimmune disease or a documented history of autoimmune disease or syndrome that requires systemic steroids or immunosuppressive agents.

    o Patients with vitiligo, type I diabetes, resolved childhood asthma/atopy are exceptions to this rule

  • A history of (non-infectious) pneumonitis that required steroids or current pneumonitis
  • Has serious concomitant illnesses, such as: cardiovascular disease (uncontrolled congestive heart failure, hypertension, cardiac ischemia, myocardial infarction, and severe cardiac arrhythmia), bleeding disorders, autoimmune diseases, severe obstructive or restrictive pulmonary diseases, active systemic infections, and inflammatory bowel disorders

    o This includes HIV or AIDS-related illness, or active HBV and HCV

  • Has an active infection requiring systemic therapy.
  • Patient has received a live vaccine within 4 weeks prior to the first dose of treatment

    o Note: Seasonal influenza vaccines for injection are generally inactivated flu vaccines and are allowed; however intranasal influenza vaccines (e.g., Flu-Mist®) are live attenuated vaccines, and are not allowed.

  • Has known psychiatric or substance abuse disorders that would interfere with cooperation with the requirements of the trial

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT03772899

Layout table for location contacts
Contact: John Lenehan, MD 519-685-8640
Contact: Saman Maleki, PhD 519-685-8500 ext 55769

Layout table for location information
Canada, Ontario
London Regional Cancer Program Recruiting
London, Ontario, Canada, N6A 5W9
Contact: John Lenehan    519-685-8500   
Contact: Saman Maleki   
Sponsors and Collaborators
Lawson Health Research Institute
Layout table for investigator information
Principal Investigator: John Lenehan, MD London Regional Cancer Program
Layout table for additonal information
Responsible Party: Lawson Health Research Institute Identifier: NCT03772899    
Other Study ID Numbers: MIMic
First Posted: December 11, 2018    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: June 27, 2019
Last Verified: June 2019

Layout table for additional information
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Drug Product: No
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Device Product: No
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Layout table for MeSH terms
Neuroendocrine Tumors
Neuroectodermal Tumors
Neoplasms, Germ Cell and Embryonal
Neoplasms by Histologic Type
Neoplasms, Nerve Tissue
Nevi and Melanomas