Regen BioPharma, Inc. announced today the filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office of a provisional US patent application covering the Company’s novel approach for enabling chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cell-based therapies to kill solid tumors through prevention of a process called “T cell exhaustion”.
CAR-T cells are very effective at treating certain lymphomas and leukemias with an overall cure rate of over 50%4. However, solid tumors remain resistant to CAR-T therapies for many reasons. One reason is “T cell exhaustion”, a term that means T cells that are initially recruited to the tumor to kill it end up losing their effectiveness .
The technology covered by this patent application introduces a novel type of T cell which is resistant to the immune suppressive effects of the tumor and prevents this exhaustion. The disclosed technology induces an intracellular program in T cells to endow them with certain features of “younger” cells, thus allowing for enhanced activity against conventional solid tumors such as lung, skin, breast and brain cancers. This includes inhibiting NR2F6, a T cell checkpoint which the Company has been focusing on.
“CAR-T cells have been in the clinic for 6 years but they have hardly made a dent in treating solid tumors,” says David Koos, Chairman and CEO of the Company. “We hope that through the diligent work of our scientists and collaborators that advancements such as what we announced today will pave the way to bring this incredible cellular immunotherapy to patients suffering from solid tumors such as lung, colon, prostate and others.
The field of cancer immunotherapy represents an approximate 100-billion-dollar annual global market and CAR-T cells, which are one type of cancer immunotherapy, are highly valued by the industry as demonstrated by the purchase of pioneering CAR-T companies such as the 2017 acquisition of Kite Pharma by Gilead Sciences for 12 billion dollars2 and the 2018 acquisition of Juno Therapeutics by Celgene for 9 billion dollars3.
In the area of cancer immunotherapy and not including the aforementioned application the Company has been granted, and thus owns, United States patents covering cord blood derived immunotherapy for cancer (patent # 11,141,471), cancer-killing Th17 cells (patent # 11,053,503), and mRNA vaccines for preventing cancer as well as treating existing tumors (patent # 11,090,332). .”