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MaxCyte and Johns Hopkins University Announce Strategic Immuno-Oncology Collaboration to Advance CAR T-cell Therapies
April 21, 2015
Gaithersburg, Maryland - MaxCyte Inc., the pioneer in cell therapies using scalable, high-performance cell transfection systems, today announces a strategic research collaboration with Johns Hopkins University (JHU) to develop unique Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T-cell therapies, which harness patients' own immune systems to combat cancers.
MaxCytes unique approach to CAR cell therapy allows targeting of solid tumor cancers by enabling control over the on-target, off-tumor toxicity, which limits other CAR therapies to hematological cancers. MaxCyte achieves this by introducing the CAR construct as a transiently expressing messenger RNA (mRNA), thus allowing control of the duration of expression and toxicity against target antigens in normal tissue. This unique approach also avoids the cell expansion step required for standard approaches, dramatically reducing manufacturing time and expense for CAR therapies from days or weeks to a matter of hours.
The preclinical work performed in collaboration with JHU will support a future planned Investigational New Drug (IND) filing for a CAR therapy targeting a broad range of solid tumors. No financial terms are disclosed.
"We are truly excited to be collaborating with Johns Hopkins, one of the leading hospitals in the world, in the development of this next-generation CAR therapy, said Doug Doerfler, President & CEO of MaxCyte, Inc. The combination of Johns Hopkins world renowned research and clinical development capabilities and MaxCytes unique product development capabilities will enable the rapidly advancing area of CAR therapies to move into the clinic in solid tumors in a platform that provides rapid, cost-effective manufacture of Cellular Therapeutics."
MaxCyte is a world leader in the discovery, development, manufacture, and delivery of innovative cell therapies utilizing best in class cell modification technologies.
MaxCyte has developed a next-generation technologyflow electroporationfor the rapid engineering of human cells as therapeutics, enabling the development of safer, more effective and lower cost cell-based therapies for a broad range of applications with blockbuster commercial potential. The company currently has clinical, pre-clinical-partnered, and proprietary products under development and is presently involved in more than a dozen trials.
The MaxCyte GT® Flow Transfection System is a universal platform for the rapid, automated loading of CAR-modified mRNA into peripheral blood cells, which avoids the time and cost-intensive cell expansion process. The loading of fresh patient cells with CAR mRNA harnesses immune cells for targeted killing of tumors. This anti-tumor activity is not dependent on the patients immune system and is independent of cell surface concentration of the tumor antigen.
The Company also markets a portfolio of products and services that include the MaxCyte STX® Scalable Transfection System and MaxCyte VLX® Large Scale Transfection System. These platforms are used in drug discovery research and screening and protein production environments by 9 of the top 10 pharma companies worldwide as well as the top three in Japan. MaxCyte products enable the rapid development and consistent production of billions of (co)transfected primary cells, stem cells, and cell lines for protein and antibody production, rapid response vaccine development, and for cell-based assays with comparable results and Seamless Scalability from the bench to HTS and pilot and production scale.