[–][+]Ushering in the Future of
NK Cell Therapy

Natural killer (NK) cells were first described in the 1970s, but only in the last 15 years has significant progress been made in understanding these cells. NK cells have a notable potential to help with cancer treatments. They have a unique ability to act like border patrol agents and select potentially dangerous cells without knowing their specific identity and without causing damage to normal tissue.

CytoSen’s technology is leading the field of NK cell therapy. Our unique approach combines immunology and nanotechnology for a solution that may potentially enable future production of cell therapies closer to the point-of-care with “turnkey” reliability, and potential future application to a broad range of diseases.

[–][+]CytoSen’s Expansion and Activation Technology for NK Cell Therapies

Problem:
Obtaining NK cells from healthy donors through apheresis, depleting the T cells present, and finishing with cytokine activation for preparing NK cells to be used in combination with chemotherapy has been applied in attempts to treat cancer. However, this process yields a limited number of NK cells for therapeutic use. NK cells have been difficult to grow in vitro, and the previous solutions that other researchers have attempted often lead to a growth plateau.

Solution:
The NK Cell Expansion and Activation Technology that CytoSen developed has helped break through the common growth plateau, making in vitro growth more feasible. Using Cyto-Sen’s technology, high-log scale proliferation of NK cells is achieved, without plateau or senescence, to produce the highest doses possible with the therapeutic NK cells having enhanced cytokine production. Our method of NK cell expansion is planned to be used for producing NK cell therapies for treatment of myeloid leukemias together with transplant and non-transplant settings and for other cancer indications in the future. Along with increased NK cell proliferation, our new methods enable the manufacture of NK cells from a wide variety of sources, including peripheral blood, cord blood, placenta, hematopoietic stem cells, and embryonic or induced pluripotent stem cells.

Cancer Therapy with NK Cells

[–][+]Clinical Evidence Supporting NK Cell Therapy in Hematopoietic Malignancies:

Novel associations between activating killer-cell immunoglobulin-like receptor genes and childhood leukemia.
Blood 2011. Almalte Z, Samarani S, Iannello A, Debbeche O, Duval M, Infante-Rivard C, et al.

The role of KIR genes and their cognate HLA class I ligands in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Blood 2014. de Smith AJ, Walsh KM, Ladner MB, Zhang S, Xiao C, Cohen F, et al.

NKAML: a pilot study to determine the safety and feasibility of haploidentical natural killer cell transplantation in childhood acute myeloid leukemia.
J Clin Oncol 2010. Rubnitz JE, Inaba H, Ribeiro RC, Pounds S, Rooney B, Bell T, et al.

Allogeneic natural killer cells for refractory lymphoma.
Cancer Immunol Immunother 2010. Bachanova V, Burns LJ, McKenna DH, Curtsinger J, Panoskaltsis-Mortari A, Lindgren BR, et al.

The impact of HLA and KIR ligand mismatching on unrelated allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in Korean adult patients.
Ann Lab Med 2015. Park H, Rho EY, In JW, Kim I, Yoon SS, Park S, et al.

A defined donor activating natural killer cell receptor genotype protects against leukemic relapse after related HLA identical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. 
Leukemia 2005. Verheyden S, Schots R, Duquet W, Demanet C.

Natural killer cell activity influences outcome after T cell depleted stem cell transplantation from matched unrelated and haploidentical donors. 
Best Pract Res Clin Haematol 2011. Lang P, Pfeiffer M, Teltschik HM, Schlegel P, Feuchtinger T, Ebinger M, et al.