Adoptive Cell Therapy at NCI

Mikenh Member Posts: 777

This is a variant of the Tumor Infiltrating Lymphocytes Clinical Trial at NCI that I've been talking about recently. The earlier trials are for those with KRAS G12D (with alleles HLA-A*1101 or HLA-C*0802) or G12V (with allele HLA-A*1101). The Adoptive Cell Trial is for more general mutations. I suspect that they are targetting KRAS, NRAS and HRAS based on some external papers that I've looked at.

They are only taking Stage 4 patients that have tried conventional therapy. They take a sample of a tumor and search for Tumor Infiltrating Lymphocytes that are in the area of the tumor. These cells can destroy tumor cells but they may not be exactly right to destroy particular tumor cells. They genetically engineer the TIL cells to attack the tumor cells and then put them back into your body.

For most patients, adoptive cell transfer starts with an operation at the National Cancer Institute. By removing one of your tumors, we are able to find and grow the immune cells that live there, known as tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes or TIL. We will grow and study TIL from your tumor in our labs.

For patients with metastatic melanoma, this process may take three to four weeks. For all other patients, that lab process sometimes takes three to four months, during which time we coordinate care with your home oncologist.

With your permission, our referral team may request samples of your tumor to test for certain proteins of interest.  For cancers expressing those proteins, patients with certain blood typing (HLA) can be treated without the need for an operation. We perform a large blood collection (called an apheresis) and genetically engineer your white blood cells to recognize those targets.

If you are eligible for a screening appointment, our staff will discuss the specifics of each protocol in detail at the time of your clinic visit.

All of our protocols require an inpatient stay of approximately three weeks at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, MD. The treatment regimen consists of chemotherapy, cells, and supportive immune medications.

I learned a lot about this from Colon Talk (and my own reading of papers and websites) and there are people that I've seen that have done very, very well with this therapy and I thought that it might be interesting to some here. The requirements are fairly steep though.