iPSC CAR-NK Cells
Cytovia and its scientific partners aim to design the next generation of CAR (Chimeric Antigen Receptor) NK Cell Therapy products by selecting appropriate target antigens and applying synthetic biology/gene editing tools to maximize the precision and physical and functional persistence of NK cells, thereby improving their clinical efficacy and safety.
The chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) is an artificially modified fusion protein that consists of an extracellular antigen recognition domain fused to an intracellular signaling domain. NK cells genetically modified with a CAR have demonstrated initial clinical success in the treatment of hematological cancers.
CAR-NK Cell Therapy has the same potent effector machinery as T-cell Therapy but does not cause Graft Vs Host Disease (GVHD) or Cytokine Release Syndrome (CRS) (observed with T-cell and CAR T-cell therapy).
Allogeneic CAR-NKs are safe off-the-shelf products and can potentially be administered in an outpatient setting.
Cytovia’s focus is on the differentiation and expansion of NK cells from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs), as well as gene editing to optimize CAR design and the performance of the NK cells.
About Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells:
2012 Medicine Nobel Prize Professor Shinya Yamanaka (Kyoto University) discovered Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs), demonstrating that mature adult cells can be transformed into stem cells.
A single clone can produce a master cell bank allowing for thousands of consistent doses per batch, significantly more cost-effective than autologous or even other allogeneic cell therapy, especially for gene-edited cell therapy products.
iPSC-derived NK and CAR-NK cells allow for easier gene-editing towards precision and persistency enhancement. This is a significant advantage when sophisticated multifaceted gene-editing is desired to address some of the major challenges in the oncology field, such as tumor microenvironment.