Novel gene therapy enables persistent anti-tumor immune response

October 9, 2013
©2013, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers

Cancer immunotherapy can successfully use the body's own immune system to kill tumor cells. But some current approaches to stimulate an antitumor immune response are short-lived, with limited clinical effectiveness. A new gene transfer strategy that introduces modified, immune-stimulating human stem cells is both feasible and effective for achieving persistent immunotherapy to treat leukemias and lymophomas, according to a study published in Human Gene Therapy.

Satiro Nakamura De Oliveira and coauthors from the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles and University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, describe the method they developed to deliver chimeric antigen receptors, or CARS, that direct the immune system to target derived from B-lymphocytes.

In the article "Modification of Hematopoietic Stem/Progenitor Cells with CD19-specific Chimeric Antigen Receptors as a Novel Approach for Cancer Immunotherapy" the authors show that by packaging the CARS in human hematopoietic , the immunotherapeutic receptors will be produced in the bloodstream for a long period of time. This persistent expression should improve their effectiveness in the treatment of blood cancers such as leukemia and lymphoma.

"This study represents an interesting new direction for an approach that has generated substantial interest," says Dr. Wilson, Director of the Gene Therapy Program, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia.

Explore further: Some immune cells appear to aid cancer cell growth, study finds

More information: The article is available on the Human Gene Therapy website.

Related Stories

Some immune cells appear to aid cancer cell growth, study finds

September 5, 2013
The immune system is normally known for protecting the body from illness. But a subset of immune cells appear to be doing more harm than good.

New anti-tumor cell therapy strategies are more effective

October 25, 2012
Targeted T-cells can seek out and destroy tumor cells that carry specific antigen markers. Two novel anti-tumor therapies that take advantage of this T-cell response are described in articles published in Human Gene Therapy, ...

Stem cells, potential source of cancer-fighting T cells

September 20, 2011
Adult stem cells from mice converted to antigen-specific T cells -- the immune cells that fight cancer tumor cells -- show promise in cancer immunotherapy and may lead to a simpler, more efficient way to use the body's immune ...

Adoptive cell transfer: New technique could make cell-based immune therapies for cancer safer, more effective

December 16, 2012
A team led by Michel Sadelain, MD, PhD, Director of the Center for Cell Engineering at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, has shown for the first time the effectiveness of a new technique that could allow the development ...

Scientists identify targets for melanoma immunotherapy

September 10, 2013
Using a highly sensitive technology called NanoString, researchers have identified seven targets that could potentially be used to develop new immunotherapies for patients with metastatic melanoma, according to a study published ...

Engineered T cells kill tumors but spare normal tissue in an animal model

April 7, 2013
The need to distinguish between normal cells and tumor cells is a feature that has been long sought for most types of cancer drugs. Tumor antigens, unique proteins on the surface of a tumor, are potential targets for a normal ...

Recommended for you

Scientists provide insight into genetic basis of neuropsychiatric disorders

July 21, 2017
A study by scientists at the Children's Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI) is providing insight into the genetic basis of neuropsychiatric disorders. In this research, the first mouse model of a mutation ...

Scientists identify new way cells turn off genes

July 19, 2017
Cells have more than one trick up their sleeve for controlling certain genes that regulate fetal growth and development.

South Asian genomes could be boon for disease research, scientists say

July 18, 2017
The Indian subcontinent's massive population is nearing 1.5 billion according to recent accounts. But that population is far from monolithic; it's made up of nearly 5,000 well-defined sub-groups, making the region one of ...

Mutant yeast reveals details of the aberrant genomic machinery of children's high-grade gliomas

July 18, 2017
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital biologists have used engineered yeast cells to discover how a mutation that is frequently found in pediatric brain tumor high-grade glioma triggers a cascade of genomic malfunctions.

Late-breaking mutations may play an important role in autism

July 17, 2017
A study of nearly 6,000 families, combining three genetic sequencing technologies, finds that mutations that occur after conception play an important role in autism. A team led by investigators at Boston Children's Hospital ...

Newly identified genetic marker may help detect high-risk flu patients

July 17, 2017
Researchers have discovered an inherited genetic variation that may help identify patients at elevated risk for severe, potentially fatal influenza infections. The scientists have also linked the gene variant to a mechanism ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.