Program: Immunotherapy for Eliminating Cancer

Image banner for Program to Use Immunotherapy to Eliminate Cancer project

Key Personnel

  • Catherine Bollard, MD 
  • Russell Cruz, MD, PhD 
  • Patrick Hanley, PhD 
  • Sharon Lam, PhD 
  • Renuka Miller, PhD 
  • Rohan Fernandes, PhD 
  • Anthony Sandler, MD 
  • Lauren McLaughlin, MD 
  • Michael Keller, MD 
  • Cecilia Barese, MD,PhD 
  • Kirsten Williams, MD 
  • Maria Martin Manso, PhD 
  • Haili Lang, MD 
  • Min Luo, PhD 
  • Kaylor Wright 
  • Sarah McCormack

Synopsis
T-cells have shown ability to recognize malignant cells: homing to disease sites, orchestrating immune responses, mediating directed lysis, and conferring lifelong protection. Both virus-specific T-cells targeting antigens expressed by virus-associated malignancies (e.g. EBV+ HL and NHL) as well as chimeric antigen receptors where T-Cell recognition is redirected to surface molecules (e.g. CD19 in B cell malignancies) have shown great promise clinically. We have set up a bench-to-bedside translational research workflow at Children’s National to: Evaluate the use of NK cells and dendritic cells in combination with T-cell therapies, improve current GMP manufacturing processes used for the generation of antitumor T-cells target more antigens in a single culture platform, and develop highly novel cellular therapies either in combination with other drugs (e.g. checkpoint inhibitors, epigenetic modifying drugs) or via genetic modification to broaden targeting and resist the immunosuppressive microenvironment.