J-TEC is also working on the development of products using autologous CAR-T cell therapy technology.
Treatment under development: Leukemia treatment using autologous CAR-T cell preparations
Autologous CAR-T cell preparations are used in immune cell therapy where the immune cells known as T-cells*1 are genetically modified to attack cancer cells more aggressively. Research is showing that CAR-T cells have a therapeutic effect that is dramatically superior to existing cancer treatments, and they can survive in the body for years, maintaining their effect long-term. In Japan two therapeutic drugs that use autologous CAR-T cells have already been approved.
Autologous CAR-T cell preparations are generally made by using a viral vector*2 to introduce the CAR gene*3 into T-cells harvested from the blood, but J-TEC is developing products that use technology jointly developed by Nagoya University and Shinshu University, which uses vectors that employ natural enzymes.
The CAR-T cell manufacturing technology jointly developed by Nagoya University and Shinshu University uses a low-priced vector based on natural enzymes to introduce the CAR gene, instead of the viral vector that has traditionally been used. The enzyme-based vector can be expected to reduce manufacturing costs for CAR-T cells in other ways as well, since there is no need for facilities and equipment that contain the virus within the process, and the need to check for viruses of vector origin is also eliminated.
- A type of lymphocyte. There are killer T-cells, which kill cells infected with viruses and bacteria, B-cells, which produce antibodies, and helper T-cells, which promote the action of phagocytes that destroy pathogens such as viruses. T-cells have T-cell receptors that specifically bind to certain antigens, and through them an immune response to that antigen is exerted.
- A vector is a molecule that has the capability to introduce a gene into a cell. A viral vector is one that utilizes the virus characteristic of penetrating into the nuclei of cells.
- The gene that causes Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) to be expressed in T-cells. CAR is a protein produced by artificially modifying T-cell receptor, and it has the functions of recognizing a specific antigen expressed on the surface of cancer cells and inducing and activating T-cells.
The use and commercialization of the medicinal products developed by Japan Tissue Engineering Co., Ltd. that are referred to on this website are approved only in Japan. A potential use and commercialization in other regions will be subject to the prior granting of a marketing authorization in the given territory and compliance with applicable laws.