Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Double-barreled Immune Cell Approach For Neuroblastoma

Date:
November 5, 2008
Source:
Baylor College of Medicine
Summary:
Adding an artificial tumor-specific receptor to immune system cells called T-lymphocytes that target a particular virus extended and improved the cells' ability to fight a form of childhood cancer called neuroblastoma, said researchers.

Adding an artificial tumor-specific receptor to immune system cells called T-lymphocytes that target a particular virus extended and improved the cells' ability to fight a form of childhood cancer called neuroblastoma, said researchers form Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital in a report that appears online today in the journal Nature Medicine.

"This is a way to convert a naturally occurring problem into a benefit in treating cancer," said Dr. Malcolm Brenner, director of the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy at BCM, TCH and The Methodist Hospital, and professor of pediatrics and medicine at BCM. He and his colleagues reported on using the new treatment in 11 patients with recurring neuroblastoma. "For the first time, we started to see tumor responses. We have one complete remission and others who have had stable disease for more than a year," said Brenner.

The patients responded after only the one infusion of cells because they last a long time in the body and their numbers can increase, said Brenner.

Previous attempted to use T-lymphocytes with an artificial receptor directed to tumor cells proved disappointing because they disappeared from the body too quickly to have an anti-cancer effect. However, cytotoxic T cells that already have a natural receptor for the Epstein-Barr virus are continually activated by the presence of the virus, which is never eliminated from the body.

Brenner and his group added to these T-lymphocytes a particular receptor for a protein called diasialoganglioside GD2, which is found in human neuroblastoma cells.

"We took the T-lymphocytes' with specificity for Epstein-Barr and added another receptor," said Brenner. "In effect they trampoline off the virus and onto the tumor."

Thus these cytotoxic T-lymphocytes remain in the body because they are constantly stimulated by the virus. Their artificial antigen receptor enables them to latch onto and kill the cancer cells.

When the researchers put the artificial receptor into both ordinary T-lymphocytes and those that are stimulated by the virus into the 11 patients, they found that the cancer directed cells stimulated by the Epstein-Barr virus lasted as long as 18 months and at higher levels than the other cells.

Neuroblastoma is a tumor of primitive cells that go on to form the sympathetic nervous system. Apart from brain tumors, it is the most common solid cancer of children, and accounts for 7 percent of the total. In two-thirds of cases, it is not diagnosed until it has already spread to other parts of the body.

He and his colleagues hope to improve the treatment to make the T-lymphocytes more potent cancer killers, he said. One way would be to add specific receptors for proteins that allow the T-lymphocytes to avoid the immune-dampening effects of the cancers. Another might be to give the treatment right after the patients receive a stem cell transplant. At that time, the number of tumor cells would be at its lowest and there would be a lot of signals telling the T-lymphocytes to increase in number.

Within the next year, they plan to add receptors for other cancers to the virus-specific T-cells and see if they get the same cancer-fighting effect.

Others who took part in this research include Martin A. Pule, Barbara Savoldo, G. Doug Myers, Claudia Rossig, Heidi V. Russell, Gianpietro Dotti,M. Helen Huls, Enli Liu, Adrian P. Gee, Zhuyong Mei, Eric Yvon, Heidi L. Weiss, Cliona M. Rooney and Helen E. Heslop, all of BCM.

Funding for this work came from the National Institutes of Health, the General Clinical Research Centers at BCM and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Baylor College of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Baylor College of Medicine. "Double-barreled Immune Cell Approach For Neuroblastoma." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081102134628.htm>.
Baylor College of Medicine. (2008, November 5). Double-barreled Immune Cell Approach For Neuroblastoma. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081102134628.htm
Baylor College of Medicine. "Double-barreled Immune Cell Approach For Neuroblastoma." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081102134628.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

AFP (July 28, 2014) The worst-ever outbreak of the deadly Ebola epidemic grips west Africa, killing hundreds. Duration: 00:48 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins