Gene modified T cell therapy for patients with cancer

Heczey András
Section Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USA

T cells genetically modifi ed to express chimeric antigen receptors can combine the antigen specificity of monoclonal antibodies with the cytotoxic function, active biodistribution and long term persistence of T cells. The approach can induce 90% complete remission rate in patients with CD19+ lymphoid leukemias; however, the in patients with solid tumors the antitumor effi cacy of CAR T cells have not reached similar levels yet. The increased levels of interleukin-6 due to T cell activation play key roles in the majority of side effects and using anti-IL-6 monoclonal antibody, tocilizumab can effectively treat these complications. Novel gene modifi cation strategies and improvements in CAR T cell manufacturing, the approach has the potential to fundamentally change the way patients with cancer are treated in the not too distant future.

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