Gene T cell Therapy to Emerge as a Novel Treatment Regimen for Epithelial Cancers

Release Date: 19-Nov-2020

A novel study is focused towards determining the clinical activity as well as safety of E7 TCR-T cells in the treatment of the patients suffering from refractory metastatic HPV- 16+ cancers. The researchers involved in the respective study found that the resistance developed by the patients during the treatment was highly linked with definitive genetic defects in the targeted peptide-HLA complex and manifold defects in antigen processing and interferon response. But the researchers involved in the respective study were keen towards finding the efficacy of the treatment in case of epithelial cancers. The whole study was highly important as epithelial cancers are found to be accounting for 90% of the total human cancers.


The clinical trial study was focused towards making the enrolled patients receive a single infusion of genetically engineered T cells expressing a T-cell receptor targeting an HLA-A*02:01-restricted epitope of HPV-16 E7 (E7 TCR-T cells). The procedure that was conducted before cell infusion was lymphocyte-depleting conditioning regimen and afterwards high-dose systemic aldesleukin was administered. In the enrolled patients, objective clinical response was observed as well as complete elimination of the cancer cells was also observed in the patients. The types of cancer in which response was observed were vulvar, anal, head and neck, and cervical cancer.After 6 weeks of infusion, median response was observed in 66% of the total T cells. Out of the 4 resistant tumors, 3 showed genetic defects in HLA-A*02:01 or B2M, which are necessary components of the target complex. 1 tumor also demonstrated copy loss with decreased expression of antigen presentation and interferon response molecules such as IFNGR1, IFNGR2, TAP1 and TAP2 molecules. Therefore, it was concluded through the means of the clinical trial that the gene engineered T cell therapy could be used as an effective treatment regimen for epithelial cancer cells.

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