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Therapeutic Targeting of Follicular T Cells with Chimeric Antigen

Aug 11, 2020 10:07:00 AM / by Stacy Matthews Branch, DVM, PhD posted in T Cells, NK Cells


Cincinnati Children’s hospital laboratory led a study that discovered a possible treatment for autoimmune diseases using T cells and CAR NK-cells. 

Adaptive or acquired immunity is a specific response to pathogens. An important aspect of adaptive immunity and memory is the T-cell help to B cells. The support to B cells is provided by follicular helper CD4 T cells and entails helping B cells to produce antibodies against invading pathogens. Although follicular helper T cells are needed for long-term immunity, exaggerated responses of these T cells can lead to adverse reactions, including the promotion of autoimmune reactions.

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Inhibiting MDR1 Could Cripple Natural Immune Response to Cancers

Jul 21, 2020 10:00:00 AM / by Stacy Matthews Branch, DVM, PhD posted in Cancer, T Cells, NK Cells


Studies find original efforts to inhibit MDR1 protein function may not be the best course of treatment for cancer patients.

The multidrug-resistant gene (MDR1) codes for p-glycoprotein, was first found in cancer cells and later in normal cells throughout the body. A basic function of MDR1 protein is to pump xenobiotic substances out of the cells as a protective mechanism. This function of MDR1 protein is also found in the blood-brain barrier, protecting the brain from chemicals in the bloodstream. Importantly, many cancer cell types with high levels of MDR1 expression were observed to exhibit resistance to chemotherapeutic drugs

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CAR NK-Cell Therapy for Patients with NHL and CLL

Apr 28, 2020 10:06:00 AM / by Stacy Matthews Branch, DVM, PhD posted in Cell Therapy, NK Cells, Blood Disorders


A cord blood-derived CAR NK-cell therapy targeting CD19 showed promising results for patients with NHL and CLL.

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T–cell therapy has been used with some success for certain types of hematological malignancies. The medical scientific community considers the possibility of using this approach for a wider spectrum of B-cell malignancies. However, there are a few significant limitations that affect the widespread successful use of CAR T for these forms of cancer.

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Metabolism, Immune Systems, and Pregnancy: What T Cells Are Revealing

Feb 11, 2020 10:09:00 AM / by Stacy Matthews Branch, DVM, PhD posted in T Cells, NK Cells, Immunotherapy (Immunology)


In addition to fetal tissue tolerance, T cells and NK cells also play a role in fetal-maternal metabolic homeostasis.

Immune system adaptations in the maternal-fetal environment are essential for a successful pregnancy. When this adaptation is hindered or inadequate, infertility, miscarriage, pregnancy complications, and adverse fetal outcomes can occur. Specific immune cells have been studied to better understand their role in pregnancy and to know what this information can provide overall regarding the development of new immunotherapeutic approaches for disease states.

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University of Minnesota Opened New NK-Cell Immunotherapy Clinical Trial

Dec 3, 2019 10:06:00 AM / by Stacy Matthews Branch, DVM, PhD posted in NK Cells, Immunotherapy (Immunology)


The new FT516 immunotherapy is the first iPSC-derived therapy approved for clinical testing in the world and may provide a treatment for many different types of cancers.

A collaboration between the University of Minnesota and Fate Therapeutics will begin clinical trials for a novel “off-the-shelf” targeted natural killer (NK) cell cancer immunotherapy derived from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). iPSCs are adult cells that have been genetically reprogrammed so that they regain the ability to differentiate into any cell type, making them pluripotent (similar to embryonic stem cells). The new NK cell therapy, FT516, is developed from genetically engineered human iPSCs with enhanced anti-tumor activity.

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