The goal of the SU2C–Lustgarten Foundation CAR T Research Team is to understand why immunotherapy does not cause tumor regression in all patients. They are studying the genetic and epigenetic markers in immune cells called CAR T cells to identify ways to optimize their cancer-killing features.
They have two overarching aims. First, they are isolating CAR T cells from patients with ovarian cancer, mesothelioma, and metastatic pancreatic cancer and analyzing them using state-of-the-art cellular assays. Second, they are studying the CAR T cells obtained from patients to understand how to prolong and enhance the cells’ activity. They expect that these studies will shed light on approaches to optimize the combination of CAR T cells with checkpoint therapies that block the function of CTLA-4 and PD-1, proteins on cell surfaces that inhibit normal immune response.
This team is part of the Pancreatic Cancer Collective portfolio of research.