Case ID: 15-023
Web Published: Jan 04, 2012
Intellectual Property Status: Patent application submitted 29th September 2009 (No. 0917094.5)
Available for: Exclusive licensing
Cytomegalovirus (CMV) re-activation is a substantial clinical problem in immune suppressed individuals, such as transplant patients. We have developed a novel immunotherapy that produces a CMV-specific therapy targeting CMV re-activation, via T Cell Receptors (TCR). The therapeutic efficacy of this TCR will be further examined through an MRC-funded Phase 1/2a clinical study, beginning in 2011.
TCR is becoming an established area of therapy, particularly in Multiple Sclerosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. Typically these therapeutics operate via cytotoxic killer T cells, which is known to be suboptima.
Our results show that this TCR therapy works through both cytotoxin killer T cells and helper cells. Thus, our TCR gene therapeutic can simultaneously produce CMV-specific killer cells and helper cells.
The therapeutic efficacy of this TCR is expected to be greater than that of a conventional TCR, which typically only works in killer T cells. Redirecting both killer T cells and helper T cells is expected to control CMV infection most efficiently.
CMV is a serious problem in transplantation medicine; for example, in liver transplantation CMV occurs in 50% of cases. The cost of treatment is high, with drug treatment alone having a direct cost in excess of $30k per patient. There are more than 27,000 transplants in the United Stated last year.
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