CAR T-cell therapy for solid tumors may advance cancer treatments

March 25, 2020

The full title of the research is "The study of the mechanisms of effectiveness of T-cells CAR-T towards solid tumors"; it was supported by nonprofit RakFond (Cancer Fund) and CyStoreLab (a resident of Skolkovo).

Immunotherapy with genetically modified lymphocytes, such as CAR-T cells, is one of the most promising branches of modern fundamental and clinical oncology. A CAR-T cell is a T-lymphocyte with a gene encoding a chimeric antigen receptor, or CAR receptor, in its genome.

"To simplify the concept, we can say that a T-cell is a soldier of the regular forces, and a CAR-T cells are special forces performing particularly difficult tasks. At the same time, CAR-T cells can be 'given a command' to destroy almost any type of tumor," explains project lead Emil Bulatov, Associate Professor at the Department of Biochemistry, Biotechnology and Pharmacology, Leading Research Associate at the Gene and Cell Technology Lab.

The process is as follows: tumor cells contain certain "beacon" proteins on their surface, by which CAR-T cells can find them in the human body and destroy them. In the case of hematologic diseases, one of these proteins is CD19, which is located on the surface of B cells. In the case of solid tumors, the HER2, PCSA, ROR1 proteins can serve as such beacons. It is the fight against solid tumors that is one of the most complex and interesting problems in this area.

Currently, there are only two approved biomedical cell preparations based on CAR-T cells for the treatment of hematologic diseases in the world (Kymriah and Yescarta). However, despite the success of CAR-T cell therapy for the treatment of hematologic diseases, the question of its effective use against solid tumors (carcinoma, neuroblastoma, etc.) remains unresolved. This is due to several reasons, such as high heterogeneity of the cell composition of solid tumors, immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment, difficulties in penetrating the tumor stroma, local hypoxia and a lack of nutrients inside the tumor. Given the high prevalence of solid tumors, the search for ways to effectively use CAR-T immunotherapy for their treatment is extremely relevant.

"Together with colleagues, we have already conducted preliminary experiments on xenograft animal models with a seated tumor, and the results are very encouraging. The data obtained on cell models of solid tumors were generally confirmed in subsequent experiments with immunodeficient mice," states Bulatov.

The use of CAR-T cells was non-toxic to mice and resulted in a marked reduction in tumor size.

"We believe that this work will bring us closer to creating domestic CAR-T-cell preparations and to treating cancer patients. The first stages of translating our results into practice will be held at the Center for Precision and Regenerative Medicine of Kazan Federal University," concludes the researcher.

Kazan Federal University

Related Proteins Articles from Brightsurf:

New understanding of how proteins operate
A ground-breaking discovery by Centenary Institute scientists has provided new understanding as to the nature of proteins and how they exist and operate in the human body.

Finding a handle to bag the right proteins
A method that lights up tags attached to selected proteins can help to purify the proteins from a mixed protein pool.

Designing vaccines from artificial proteins
EPFL scientists have developed a new computational approach to create artificial proteins, which showed promising results in vivo as functional vaccines.

New method to monitor Alzheimer's proteins
IBS-CINAP research team has reported a new method to identify the aggregation state of amyloid beta (Aβ) proteins in solution.

Composing new proteins with artificial intelligence
Scientists have long studied how to improve proteins or design new ones.

Hero proteins are here to save other proteins
Researchers at the University of Tokyo have discovered a new group of proteins, remarkable for their unusual shape and abilities to protect against protein clumps associated with neurodegenerative diseases in lab experiments.

Designer proteins
David Baker, Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Washington to speak at the AAAS 2020 session, 'Synthetic Biology: Digital Design of Living Systems.' Prof.

Gone fishin' -- for proteins
Casting lines into human cells to snag proteins, a team of Montreal researchers has solved a 20-year-old mystery of cell biology.

Coupled proteins
Researchers from Heidelberg University and Sendai University in Japan used new biotechnological methods to study how human cells react to and further process external signals.

Understanding the power of honey through its proteins
Honey is a culinary staple that can be found in kitchens around the world.

Read More: Proteins News and Proteins Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to