CAR-Modified T Cells for the Treatment of Solid Tumors

August 15, 2013
Renier J. Brentjens, MD, PhD

Renier J. Brentjens, MD, PhD, from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, discusses the potential efficacy of CAR-modified T cells for the treatment of solid tumors.

Renier J. Brentjens, MD, PhD, Leukemia Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, discusses the potential efficacy of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-modified T cells for the treatment of solid tumors.

Moving CAR-modified T cells to other types of cancer first requires the identification of antigens on tumor cells that can be safely targeted. Even when an optimal target is selected, the tumor microenvironment must be considered. Brentjens says that it is clear that solid tumors are able to recruit immunosuppressive cells and factors that could inhibit the efficacy of CAR-modified T cells.

After identifying proper targets, researchers and physicians must build a better T cell that can overcome the hostile environment of a solid tumor.

Clinical Pearls

Finally, there is a need to develop clinically relevant mouse models before injecting into humans. The oncology community, Brentjens says, needs to be careful not to rush this technology into patients.Necessary steps to move CAR-modified T cells into solid tumors:

  • Identify optimal targets for solid tumors
  • Build a better T cell that can overcome immunosuppressive cells and factors
  • Develop clinically relevant mouse models