Reducing B cells with CAR T cells is effective treatment of experimental lupus

Medical Xpress | March 06, 2019

Depleting the number of harmful B cells with novel immunotherapy that employs modified T cells may offer an effective strategy to treat lupus, according to a new study funded by the Lupus Research Alliance. These findings offer a renewed optimism for the elimination of B cells to provide a therapeutic option in lupus and pave the way for clinical research to test this new approach. B cells are a critical component of the immune system and play an important role in lupus including the production of auto-antibodies which can lead to inflammation and organ damage. B cells can also directly activate other cells of the immune system—T cells—and can secrete molecules, cytokines, that worsen the inflammatory immune response leading to disease flares. Given the central role and wide range of effects of B cells on lupus, it is not surprising that this cell type has been the subject of intense research in lupus for decades. Depleting the number of B cells has been one tantalizing approach that was tested in systemic lupus and lupus nephritis with rituximab: a humanized monoclonal antibody approved to treat blood cancers as well as several autoimmune diseases including rheumatoid arthritis and Pemphigus Vulgaris. Rituximab was not approved for lupus because the Phase 3 trials testing its use in lupus patients did not reach statistical significance. Yet the agent is still used off-label because it helps some lupus patients.

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CELL AND GENE THERAPY

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Adicet Bio, Inc. | September 06, 2022

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INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

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