Cellular immunotherapy is revolutionizing cancer treatment. And off-the-shelf, or allogeneic, treatments are beginning to replace technologies developed individually for each patient.
This is good news because the potential of allogeneic therapies is great. They promise to significantly save time and cut costs compared to individualised, or autologous, treatments.
In Cells special issue ‘Allogeneic Cell Cancer Immunotherapies” editor Alan Trounson introduces five papers from leading research teams, including two from Cartherics’ scientists. They all tackle the major scientific hurdle the new technologies face: possible rejection of treatments by patients’ immune systems.
Trounson is impressed by the solutions presented. “Early progress is encouraging, but the outcome of human clinical trials remains essential to evaluate the safety and efficacy of these new allogeneic cell therapy approaches,” he notes.
Cellular immunotherapy is revolutionizing cancer treatment. However, autologous transplants are complex, costly, and limited by the number and quality of T cells that can be isolated from and expanded for re-infusion into each patient.
This paper demonstrates a stromal support cell-free in vitro method for the differentiation of T cells from umbilical cord blood hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs).
From autologous cancer killers to off-the-shelf products targeting solid tumours like ovarian, prostate and breast cancer, Cartherics is developing them all.
The potential of such therapies is the reason Cartherics’ Chief Scientific Officer Richard Boyd was invited to speak at the international Multi-Functional Cell Therapies Summit in Boston, 4-6 May 2021.
In his presentation, Richard updated delegates on Cartherics’ recent advances.
Natural killer (NK) cells are potent innate immune system effector lymphocytes armed with multiple mechanisms for killing cancer cells. Given the dynamic roles of NK cells in tumor surveillance, they are fast becoming a next-generation tool for adoptive immunotherapy. Many strategies are being employed to increase their number and improve their ability to overcome cancer resistance and the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment.
Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells have revolutionized blood cancer immunotherapy; however, their efficacy against solid tumors has been limited. A common mechanism of tumor escape from single target therapies is downregulation or mutational loss of the nominal epitope.
Chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) have been used for efficient destruction of B cell tumors but have been relatively ineffective as therapy for solid tumors. Ovarian cancer is a difficult cancer to treat, with five-year survival rates commonly around 25% of patients at diagnosis.
Cartherics Chief Scientific Officer, Richard Boyd, presented details to delegates of Cartherics’ pre-clinical in vitro and animal model research, cell manufacture for clinical trials, and corporate game plan.