PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Lifespan researchers say they have made a major breakthrough in fighting brain cancer.

The Lifespan Cancer Institute held a news conference at Rhode Island Hospital to present results from a vaccine trial for glioblastoma, the most common and lethal form of brain cancer.

Watch the full press conference in the video above.

According to researchers, the Phase III clinical trial of the DCVax-L cancer vaccine shows that it can expand the life of patients with both newly diagnosed and recurrent glioblastoma.

“The nice thing about it is it’s non-toxic. Just like getting a vaccine for the flu or COVID that we are all familiar with,” said Dr. Steven Toms, director of the Brain Tumor and Stereotactic Radiosurgery Program.

“You get an injection a few times a month to start and then monthly for a few months and it seems to activate the patient’s neuroimmune cells to attack the cancer and reduce the chances of this malignancy coming back and killing the person,” he continued.

During the trial, researchers said the median survival rate for newly diagnosed patients increased to 22.4 months, and the five-year survival rate was 13%.

Patients normally survive for 15 to 17 months after they are diagnosed, with a five-year survival rate of only 5%, researchers noted.

Researchers say this is the first time in nearly 20 years that a Phase III trial of a systemic treatment has shown such survival extension in newly diagnosed glioblastoma.

The study was lead by Dr. Linda Liau, an internationally renowned neurosurgeon-scientist and Northwest Biotherapeutics lead investigator of its DCVax-L drug.