CRISPR-produced CAR T cells could better treat solid tumors

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells are biological assassins: white blood cells that are specifically engineered to attack cancer cells. Over the past five years, they’ve become an established therapeutic option for patients with blood cancer that has withstood standard treatments.

But dueling with cancer cells is taxing work, particularly in solid tumor microenvironments that are resistant to the immune system. With that in mind, a team of University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers is working to produce CAR T cells that could deliver results in solid tumors, using gene editing rather than a viral method to manufacture them.

The group, led by Krishanu Saha, an associate professor of biomedical engineering, and Christian Capitini, an associate professor of pediatrics, has detailed the work in an article published in the Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer.

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