The founder and chief executive officer of SQZ Biotech discussed the development and advantages of their proprietary Cell Squeeze technology in creating cell therapies.
"SQZ is such a simple system that it seems to work across every cell type that we try and we can deliver a whole wide range of different materials. Ultimately that means we can go after a lot of biologies that were hard in the past. So, from a patient perspective, that expands what you can implement this for and solves that problem as far as the biologies.”
Unlike many emerging cell therapies that rely on viral vectors and multi-step manufacturing processes, SQZ Biotech’s approach uses their proprietary Cell Squeeze technology to temporarily disrupt cell membranes and allow the entry of the biologic cargo.1 The company hopes that their relatively simple approach may allow for a wider application of cell therapies and cause less dysfunction to the altered cells.
GeneTherapyLive spoke with Armon Sharei, PhD, founder and chief executive officer of SQZ to learn more about the development of Cell Squeeze technology and its potential to be more widely used than traditional cell therapy approaches. He discussed the limitations of cell therapies currently using electroporation or viral transfection and stressed the simplicity of Cell Squeeze and its greatly reduced turn-around time that allows for efficient and accessible manufacturing of therapies.
He also touched on the recent preclinical data presented at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) 2021 Annual Meeting, April 9-14, 2021, which showed that SQZ-enhanced antigen-presenting cells demonstrated meaningful increases in CD8 T-cell response through incorporating costimulatory molecules and cytokine signaling.2