Reducing Off-Target Effects of CAR T-Cell Therapies

Eric von Hofe, PhD, president and chief operating officer of AffyImmune, discussed advantages of the Affinity tuning platform.

“Not only do the T-cells last longer with this lower affinity, but they avoid cells that express lower levels of the target... it’s a gray area, you want to be able to attack the cancer as hard as you can, but you don't want off-target toxicities. So that's a major advantage to the Affinity tuning, and they're actually more active against tumor cells expressing high levels... Both the tuning and tracking ability I think improve the overall safety outlook for this drug.”

AffyImmune is moving towards more precise cancer targeting with less off-target effects with the help of their Affinity tuning platform. The chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cells they are producing are designed to have a lower affinity to their target than traditional CAR T-cells. Their researchers found that this lower affinity actually caused the cells to have higher activity against cancer cells and lower activity against other cells, reducing off-target effects.

AffyImmune’s lead product, AIC100, is currently the subject of a recruiting phase 1 study (NCT04420754) in participants with refractory thyroid cancer. The investigative therapy was granted fast track designation by the FDA in May 2021.

GeneTherapyLive spoke with Eric von Hofe, PhD, president and chief operating officer, AffyImmune, to learn more about the company’s cell therapy technologies and the targets and indications they are investigating. He also discussed the company’s future research and plans.

AffyImmune Therapeutics’ AIC100 granted fast track designation for treating thyroid cancer. News release. AffyImmune. May 17, 2021.
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