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A Rapid Method of Isolating Neoantigen-specific T Cell Receptor Sequences

Recent research has demonstrated that neoantigen-specific T-cell receptors (TCRs) can be isolated from a cancer patient’s lymphocytes. These TCRs may be used to engineer populations of tumor-reactive T cells for cancer immunotherapies. Obtaining sequences of these functional TCRs is a critical initial step in preparing this type of personalized cancer treatment; however, current methods are time-consuming and labor-intensive. Scientists at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) have developed a rapid and robust method of isolating the sequences of mutation-specific TCRs to alleviate these issues; they seek licensing and/or co-development research collaborations for the development of a method for isolating the sequences of tumor-reactive TCRs. For collaboration opportunities, please contact Steven A. Rosenberg, M.D., Ph.D. at sar@nih.gov.

Tethered Interleukin-15 (IL-15)/IL-21 to Enhance T Cells for Cellular Therapy

Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) have developed a method to improve the function of therapeutic engineered T cells used for Adoptive T Cell Therapy (ACT) for various cancers and diseases through the co-expression of Interleukin-15 (IL-15) and IL-21 by a flexible linker to the cell membrane. Researchers at the NCI seek licensing and/or co-development research collaborations for this invention.

Therapeutic Antitumor Combination Containing TLR4 Agonist HMGN1

Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) have developed a combination of immunoadjuvants and immune checkpoint inhibitors to stimulate an immune response against cancer. The combination therapy has been tested in xenograft models and shown successful for both treatment of an existing tumor and resistance to re-challenge. Researchers at the NCI seek licensing and/or co-development research collaborations for this invention.

Chimeric Antigen Receptors that Recognize Mesothelin for Cancer Immunotherapy

Researchers at the NCI have developed chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) with a high affinity for mesothelin to be used as an immunotherapy to treat pancreatic cancer, ovarian cancer, and mesothelioma. Cells that express CARs, most notably T cells, are highly reactive against their specific tumor antigen in an MHC-unrestricted manner to generate an immune response that promotes robust tumor cell elimination when infused into cancer patients.

Targeted RNA/DNA Nanoparticles with Single Stranded RNA Toeholds

The technology is directed to the use of single-stranded RNA overhangs or toeholds of varying lengths (< 12 nucleotides) contained in nucleic acid-based nanoparticles which trigger the association of these nanoparticles and activates multiple functionalities such as gene silencing and/or cell-specific targeting. The use of RNA toeholds is superior to that of DNA toeholds in that it allows for smaller nanoparticles (fewer nucleotides for the toeholds) resulting in greater chemical stability, less immunogenic and higher yield of production. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) seeks licensing and/or co-development research collaborations for use of RNA overhangs or toeholds in nucleic acid nanoparticles.

Nanoparticle-hydrogel Composite for Nucleic Acid Molecule Delivery

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) seeks research a co-development partner and/or licensees for applications utilizing the nanoparticle platform technology for delivery of cancer-specific microRNAs, particularly for therapeutic uses in surface cancers, such as mesothelioma.

Margaric Acid Decreases PIEZO2 Mediated Pain

Investigators at the National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) and the University of Tennessee Health and Science Center have shown that administration of margaric acid can ameliorate pain induced by a variety of noxious stimuli in mice. In vitro and ex vivo studies in human and murine neural cells indicate that the mechanism of action of margaric acid is mediated by PIEZO2 (Piezo-type mechanosensitive ion channel component 2) function. NCCIH seeks research co-development partners and/or licensees for methods of using the fatty acid, margaric acid to treat pain.

Fusion Proteins as HIV-1 Entry Inhibitors

Novel fusion proteins with good stability and potency against HIV-1. These fusion proteins have good drug properties and potential as prophylactics or therapeutics against HIV-1 infection. Researchers at the NCI seek licensing for the development and commercialization of novel fusion proteins as therapeutics or prophylactics against HIV-1 infection.

Niclosamide for Treating Adrenocortical Cancer (ACC)

Researchers at the NCI have developed a novel treatment for adrenocortical cancer (ACC) by repositioning the drug niclosamide. New treatments for ACC can help patients with this rare and aggressive disease, where the current standard of care involves highly toxic options. The NCI seeks parties to license this method of treating adrenocortical cancer using niclosamide.

Antibody and Immunotoxin Treatments for Mesothelin-expressing Cancers

The National Cancer Institute Laboratory of Molecular Biology is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in licensing or collaborative research to further develop, evaluate, or commercialize antibody-based treatments of mesothelin-expressing cancers.

Use of Interleukin (IL)-34 to Treat Retinal Inflammation and Neurodegeneration

Researchers at the National Eye Institute have developed a new cytokine therapy that delivers functional interleukin 34 (IL-34) to the retina for treating ocular inflammatory diseases – such as uveitis and degenerative retinal diseases. Intraocular delivery of IL-34 protein or IL-34 gene expression system can effectively prevent retinal inflammation. Thus, it may be a promising strategy to produce long-lasting effects in suppressing abnormal retinal inflammation and preventing photoreceptor death.

Small Molecule Inhibitors of Drug Resistant Forms of HIV-1 Integrase

Researchers at the National Cancer Institute discovered small-molecule compounds containing 1-hydroxy-2-oxo-1,8-naphthyridine moieties whose activity against HIV-1 integrase mutants confer resistance to currently approved INSTIs. Preliminary rodent efficacy, metabolic, and pharmacokinetic studies have been completed by the NCI researchers. The National Cancer Institute seeks partners to commercialize this class of compounds through licensing or co-development.

Potassium Hydroxy Citrate Promotes Longevity and Efficacy of Anti-Tumor T cells for Adoptive Cell Therapy (ACT)

Adoptive cell therapy (ACT) using tumor-specific T cells leads to complete tumor regression in some cancer patients. However, limiting the efficacy of this therapy is that T cells become functionally exhausted and have short half-lives after adoptive transfer. Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) have discovered a novel method to generate long-lived memory tumor-specific T cells with enhanced tumor clearance and persistence upon in vivo transfer. NCI is seeking parties interested in licensing and/or co-developing potassium hydroxy citrate to promote longevity and efficacy of tumor-specific T cells.

Polymeric Delivery Platform for Therapeutics

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) seeks licensing and/or co-development research collaborations for a polymeric drug delivery platform that targets scavenger receptor A1 (SR-A1), a receptor highly expressed in macrophages, monocytes, mast cells, dendritic cells (myeloid lineages), and endothelial cells. The platform delivers various immunomodulatory therapeutic cargo including small molecule drugs, therapeutic peptides, and vaccines, to the lymphatic system and myeloid/antigen presenting cell (APC) sub-populations.

T cell Receptors Which Recognize Mutated EGFR

Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) have isolated T cell receptors (TCRs) that target specific mutations in the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). The mutated protein recognized by these TCRs is frequently expressed in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). These TCRs can be used for a variety of therapeutic applications, including engineered adoptive cell immunotherapy. Researchers at the NCI seek licensing and/or co-development research collaborations for these novel T cell receptors that recognize EGFR mutations.

Novel Regulatory B cells for Treatment of Cancer and Autoimmune Disease

Cancer cells have been found to directly activate resting B cells to form suppressive regulatory B cells (tBregs) and utilize them to evade immune surveillance and mediate metastasis. tBregs directly inhibit CD4+ and CD8+ T cell activity in a cell contact-dependent manner, induce FoxP3+ T cell activity, and promote Treg-dependent metastasis. The National Institute on Aging's Immunotherapeutics Unit, is seeking parties interested in licensing or co-development of regulatory B cells to control autoimmune diseases and strategies that inactivate tBregs to control cancer immune escape. 

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