Killing Cancer With an Immune System Reboot and Altered T Cells

From EurekAlert!: "A potent anti-tumor gene introduced into mice with metastatic melanoma has resulted in permanent immune reconfiguration and produced a complete remission of their cancer. ... researchers used a modified lentivirus to introduce a potent anti-melanoma T cell receptor gene into the hematopoietic stem cells of mice. Hematopoietic stem cells are the bone marrow cells that produce all blood and immune system cells. The T cell gene, which recognizes a specific protein found on the surface of melanoma, was isolated and cloned from a patient with melanoma. The gene-modified stems cells were then transplanted back into hosts and found to eradicate metastatic melanoma for the lifetime of the mice. ... We found that the transplantation of gene-modified hematopoietic stem cells results in a new host immune system and the complete elimination of tumor. To date, cancer immunotherapies have been hampered by limited and diminishing immune responses over time. We believe this type of translational model opens new doors for patients with melanoma and potentially other cancers by taking advantage of the potent regenerative capacity of hematopoietic stem cells and new advances in gene therapy."

Link: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-11/iuso-gtf111810.php

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