Compound CARs could be more effective than single CARs in treating cancers

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iCell Gene Therapeutics presented results from its ongoing clinical trial which uses compound CAR-T cell therapy (ICG144) in patients with difficult to treat Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML).

Compound CARs are multiple target CARs expressed on a single T-cell. In this case, the CARs are directed against two cancer cell proteins, CLL1 and CD33. These proteins are associated with acute myeloid leukemia, myelodysplastic syndromes, chronic myeloid leukemia and chronic myeloproliferative neoplasms. The double action of compound CARs is expected to fight cancer more effectively and prevent tumor relapse. This is particularly important in cancers like AML where the heterogenous nature of the cancer cells make them extremely challenging for treatment.

The Phase 1 study is being conducted at Chengdu Military General Hospital. Data presented at the 60th American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting in San Diego, from the two patients treated shows positive outcome. The treatment led both patients to complete response and engraftment of haploidentical stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) without myeloablative conditioning. Grade 1 cytokine release syndrome was observed in both patients and grade 3 neurotoxicity was seen in one patient.

Dr Fang Liu, Principal Investigator of the study commented: “Patient response seen to date is encouraging for refractory AML patients, and opens the potential of this novel therapy as bridge to transplant, a supplement to chemotherapy, or as a standalone therapy for patients with acute myeloid leukemia.”

Source: iCell Gene Therapeutics Presents First-in-Human Data of CLL1-CD33 Compound CAR T in Refractory Acute Myeloid Leukemia; Press Release