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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.

Human T Cell Receptors for Treating Cancer

T cell receptors (TCRs) are proteins that recognize antigens in the context of infected or transformed cells and activate T cells to mediate an immune response and destroy abnormal cells. The National Cancer Institute's Surgery Branch seeks interested parties to license or co-develop the use of T cell receptors (TCRs) cloned against the SSX-2 antigen for the treatment of cancer.

Near-IR Light-Cleavable Antibody Conjugates and Conjugate Precursors

Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) developed novel groups of cyanine (Cy) based antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) chemical linkers that undergo photolytic cleavage upon irradiation with near-IR light. By using the fluorescent properties of the Cy linker to monitor localization of the ADC, and subsequent near-IR irradiation of cancerous tissue, drug release could be confined to the tumor microenvironment.