The adoptive transfer of T cells expressing chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) has demonstrated clinical efficacy in the treatment of advanced cancers, with anti-CD19 CAR-T cells achieving up to 90% complete remission among patients with relapsed B-cell malignancies. However, challenges such as antigen escape and immunosuppression limit the long-term efficacy of adoptive T-cell therapy. Here, I will discuss the development of and clinical data on next-generation T cells that can target multiple cancer antigens and resist antigen escape. I will also present recent work on tuning CAR signaling activities via rational protein design to achieve greater in vivo anti-tumor efficacy. This presentation will highlight the potential of synthetic biology in generating novel mammalian cell systems with multifunctional outputs for therapeutic applications.
Dr. Yvonne Chen is an Associate Professor of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics at the University of California, Los Angeles. Prior to joining UCLA in 2013, Dr. Chen was a Junior Fellow in the Harvard Society of Fellows. She received her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University and her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology. She performed postdoctoral research at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute and the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School. The Chen lab’s work on engineering next-generation T-cell therapies for cancer has been recognized by the NIH Director’s Early Independence Award, the NSF CAREER Award, the Hellman Fellowship, the ACGT Young Investigator Award in Cell and Gene Therapy for Cancer, the Mark Foundation Emerging Leader Award, and the Cancer Research Institute Lloyd J. Old STAR Award. Dr. Chen is also a Member Researcher in the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy.
For details of her research and recent publication, please visit HERE
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