Geoffrey Hodge on Developing CAR T-Cell Therapies for Solid Tumors


Geoffrey Hodge, chief executive officer of SOTIO Biotech US, discussed the company's development of the BOXR cell therapy platform.

“What we’re looking at is adding an additional gene, the ‘bolt-on’ gene: a second gene in addition to the traditional CAR-T transgene that can help the T-cells survive in the solid tumor microenvironment. And so we’ve built a screening platform to look at potential genes of interest and screen them in a number of different tests, in particular low-glucose and low-oxygen, which are pretty characteristic of the challenge that T-cells encounter in the solid tumor microenvironment.”

While there has been great success with treating hematological cancers with CAR T-cell therapies, the treatment of solid tumors has remained a challenge for the field of cell therapy.

Geoffrey Hodge, chief executive officer, SOTIO Biotech US, spoke with CGTLive about the company's Bolt-On Chimeric Receptor (BOXR) cell therapy screening platform and its use in identifying "bolt-on" transgenes that could potentially improve the effectiveness of CAR T-cells in solid tumor microenvironments.

He discussed GOT2, the first transgene identified by the company for this purpose, which codes for an enzyme that when over-expressed makes T-cells much more competitive in models of the low-glucose and low-oxygen microenvironments found in solid tumors. Hodge mentioned that following the pre-clinical studies, an Investigational New Drug application for a CAR-T therapy candidate based on these findings, BOXR1030, was filed last year. He also discussed the company’s upcoming clinical studies for BOXR1030 (NCT05120271) and ongoing efforts to identify additional transgenes of interest with the BOXR screening platform.

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