Volume 3.22 | Jun 9

Human Immunology News 3.22 June 9, 2015
Human Immunology News
     In this issue: Publications | Reviews | Science News | Industry News | Policy News | Events | Jobs
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TOP STORY
Early Clinical Trial Success for New Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment
Researchers have developed a world-first vaccine-style therapeutic approach to treat rheumatoid arthritis. Results from a Phase I clinical trial demonstrate the new treatment is safe and effective in suppressing the immune response. [Press release from the University of Queensland discussing publication in Science Translational Medicine] Press Release | Video | Abstract
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PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
High-Density Preculture of PBMC Restores Defective Sensitivity of Circulating CD8 T-Cells to Virus- and Tumor-Derived Antigens
Using the simple and robust RESTORE (resetting T-cells to original reactivity) protocol, i.e. pre-culturing peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) for two days at a high cell density before initiation of antigenic stimulation, researchers showed that CD8 T-cell responses to viral and to tumor-associated antigens are greatly underestimated in blood, and sometimes even remain undetected if conventional, unprocessed PBMC cultures are used. [Blood] Abstract

Paradoxical Immune Responses in Non-HIV Cryptococcal Meningitis
Despite the expectation that, as in HIV, T-cell immunity would be deficient in patients with severe central nervous system (s-CNS) disease, cerebrospinal fluid immunophenotyping, T-cell activation studies, soluble cytokine mapping and tissue cellular phenotyping demonstrated that patients with s-CNS disease had effective microbiological control, but displayed strong intrathecal expansion and activation of cells of both the innate and adaptive immunity including HLA-DR+ CD4+ and CD8+ cells and NK cells. [PLoS Pathog] Full Article

Neonatal Regulatory T Cells Have Reduced Capacity to Suppress Dendritic Cell Function
Scientists found that, relative to adult regulatory T cells (Tregs), activated Tregs from human neonates expressed lower FOXP3 and CTLA-4, but contained higher levels of cAMP. [Eur J Immunol] Abstract

IL-15 Dependent Induction of IL-18 Secretion as a Feedback Mechanism Controlling Human MAIT-Cell Effector Functions
Investigators demonstrated that in the absence of TCR crosslinking, human mucosal associated invariant T (MAIT) cells secrete IFN-γ, increase perforin expression and switch on granzyme B production in response to IL-15. [Eur J Immunol] Abstract

Optimization of Methods for the Genetic Modification of Human T Cells
The authors describe detailed protocols that will aid in the study of primary human CD4+ T cells. First, they describe a method for development of effective microRNA/shRNAs using available online algorithms. Second, they illustrate an optimized protocol for high efficacy retroviral or lentiviral transduction of human T cell lines. [Immunol Cell Biol] Abstract

Preferential Expansion of Pro-Inflammatory Tregs in Human Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
Investigators determined regulatory T cell (Treg) subset distributions and characteristics present in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients. Tregs isolated from patients with NSCLC were found to have enhanced suppressive function on naive T cells. [Cancer Immunol Immunother] Abstract

Characterization of Regulatory B Cells in Graves’ Disease and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis
Researchers pulsed purified B cells from 12 Hashimoto’s thyroiditis patients, 12 Graves’ disease (GD) patients, and 12 healthy donors with the thyroid self-antigen, thyroglobulin and added the B cells back to the remaining peripheral blood mononuclear cells. This procedure induced IL-10+ B-cell differentiation in GD. [PLoS One] Full Article

A Mycobacterium tuberculosis Dormancy Antigen Differentiates Latently Infected Bacillus Calmette–Guérin-Vaccinated Individuals
Since improved tests to diagnose M. tuberculosis infection are required, investigators assessed the efficacy of several M. tuberculosis latency antigens. IFN-γ production against CFP-10, ESAT-6, Rv2624c, Rv2626c and Rv2628 antigens was tested in peripheral blood mononuclear cells. [EBioMedicine] Full Article

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REVIEWS
T-Cell and Natural Killer Cell Therapies for Hematologic Malignancies after Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: Enhancing the Graft-versus-Leukemia Effect
The authors provide an overview of immunotherapeutic strategies following hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, with discussions centered on natural killer and T-cell biology. [Haematologica] Full Article

Type 1 Regulatory T Cells: A New Mechanism of Peripheral Immune Tolerance
Investigators focus on the discovery, associated biomarkers, regulatory functions, methods of induction, association with disease, and clinical trials of type 1 regulatory T cells. [Cell Mol Immunol] Abstract

Visit our reviews page to see a complete list of reviews in the human immunology research field.

Invitation to Attend SMi 2nd Annual Immunogenicity Conference 2015
 
SCIENCE NEWS
Celgene Announces New Data to Be Presented
Celgene International Sàrl announced that data from 11 abstracts evaluating Celgene investigational and marketed products will be presented. [Press release from Celgene Corporation discussing research to be presented at the 2015 European League against Rheumatism (EULAR) Annual Congress, Rome] Press Release

Roche to Announce New Data in Rheumatoid Arthritis and Severe Inflammatory Disorders
Roche announced that new data in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and other severe autoimmune conditions will be presented. The data reinforces the significant body of evidence for RoACTEMRA® and MabThera® in RA and other immune-mediated conditions. [Press release from F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd. discussing research to be presented at the 2015 European League against Rheumatism (EULAR) Annual Congress, Rome] Press Release

Positive New, Long-Term Follow-Up Data of Asterias Biotherapeutics’ AST-VAC1 Cancer Vaccine Demonstrates Prolonged Relapse-Free Survival in Patients with High-Risk Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)
Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc. announced positive, new, long-term follow-up data from a Phase II clinical trial of AST-VAC1 in patients with intermediate and high risk AML. AST-VAC1 is the Company’s autologous telomerase-based dendritic cell cancer vaccine. [Press release from Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc. discussing research presented at the 2015 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, Chicago] Press Release

Bellicum Announces ASCO Presentation Featuring Its Novel CAR T Cell Co-Stimulatory Domain Designed to Improve Potency against Solid Tumors
Bellicum Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced the presentation of a poster highlighting the potent anti-tumor effects of CAR T cells constructed with its novel, proprietary, dual co-stimulatory domain, “MC” (MyD88/CD40). [Press release from Bellicum Pharmaceuticals, Inc. discussing research presented at the 2015 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, Chicago] Press Release

Momenta Pharmaceuticals Presented New Data from Phase I Trial of Necuparanib in Patients with Pancreatic Cancer
Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. presented updated data from the Phase I trial evaluating necuparanib in combination with nab-paclitaxel and gemcitabine in patients with advanced metastatic pancreatic cancer. [Press release from Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. discussing research presented at the 2015 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, Chicago] Press Release

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INDUSTRY NEWS
Seattle Genetics and Unum Therapeutics Enter into Strategic Cancer Immunotherapy Collaboration
Seattle Genetics, Inc. and Unum Therapeutics announced that the two companies have entered into a strategic collaboration and license agreement to develop and commercialize novel antibody-coupled T-cell receptor therapies for cancer. [Seattle Genetics, Inc.] Press Release

Baxter Ventures, Mayo Clinic and Velocity Pharmaceutical Development Announce the Formation of Vitesse Biologics, LLC, a Company Structured to Accelerate Therapeutic Innovation
Baxter Ventures, Mayo Clinic and Velocity Pharmaceutical Development, LLC announced the formation of Vitesse Biologics, LLC. Vitesse is a unique collaboration model initiated by Baxter Ventures to focus on the development of antibody and protein-based therapeutics in the areas of immunology, hematology, and oncology. [Mayo Clinic] Press Release

Massachusetts General Hospital Launches Phase II Trial of BCG Vaccine to Reverse Type 1 Diabetes
A Phase II clinical trial testing the ability of the generic vaccine bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) to reverse advanced type 1 diabetes has received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. [Massachusetts General Hospital] Press Release

CEL-SCI Is Cleared to Start Patient Enrollment for Its Phase III Cancer Immunotherapy Trial in Thailand
CEL-SCI Corporation announced that CEL-SCI is now cleared to start patient enrollment in Thailand in its ongoing Phase III trial with its investigational cancer immunotherapy Multikine in patients with advanced primary head and neck cancer. [CEL-SCI Corporation] Press Release
 
POLICY NEWS
National Institutes of Health (United States)

Food and Drug Administration (United States)

Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (United States)

European Medicines Agency (European Union)

Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (United Kingdom)

Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia)
 
EVENTS
NEW 2015 Midwest Conference on Cell Therapy & Regenerative Medicine
September 18-19, 2015
Kansas City, United States

NEW International Conference on Vaccines Research & Development (Vaccines R&D-2015)
November 2-4, 2015
Baltimore, United States

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the human immunology community.
 
JOB OPPORTUNITIES
NEW Scientific Marketing Specialist – Immunology (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Scientist – Immunology and Cell Separation (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Research Associate – Cell Separation (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

PhD Position – Molecular Immunology (VIB – Ghent University)

Head Stem Cells Immunotherapies Service Lab (NHS Blood and Transplant)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Immune Reconstitution in Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (Stanford University)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Immune Tolerance (Stanford University)

Research Scientist – Immunology (Gilead Sciences)

PhD Position – Microbial Immunology (Hans Knöll Institute)

Process Facilitator (Opexa Therapeutics)

Scientist – Immunology Discovery (Genentech, Inc.)

Postdoctoral Position – Immunology (University of California, San Francisco)


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