Novel Cell-Type Therapeutic Platforms in Oncology: If You’ve Seen One, You’ve Seen…One
August 11, 2020
- Joel Sandler, PhD, Principal and Practice Head, Cello Health BioConsulting
- Lawrence Lamb, PhD, EVP and CSO, Incysus Therapeutics
- Kurt Gunter, MD, CMO, Kuur Therapeutics
Perhaps more so than any other modality to date, cancer cell therapies have captured the imaginations and wherewithal of industry, investor, and oncologist communities alike. A fundamental but often vaguely understood component of emerging platforms is the cell itself. In addition to alpha-beta T-cells found in branded CAR-T products (Novartis’s Kymriah and Gilead’s Yescarta), additional cell types such as natural killers (NKs), macrophages, dendritic cells, and rarer sub-populations such as NKT cells and gamma-delta T-cells, all play important, complementary, and often nuanced roles in the body. And with dramatic improvements in our understanding of immunology, disease pathology, and gene editing technology, many of these cell types can now be readily modified and manufactured as clinical-grade therapeutic candidates.
But why should investors and Pharma partners deploy scarce resources to develop novel cell types? Can they unlock value and address shortcomings of first-mover CAR-T brands? Can they be delivered as truly ‘off-the-shelf’ products? Can they address solid tumors?
Please join us for what promises to be a provocative discussion as we attempt to answer some of these questions and explore the overlay between the science, value proposition, and strategic positioning of emerging novel cell-type platforms.