Researchers develop a remote-controlled cancer immunotherapy system

An innovative ultrasound system has been developed to control genetic processes in live T cells of the immune system. This team of researchers can destroy cancer cells. By developing non-invasive immunotherapeutic strategies, cancer cells can be manipulated and destroyed.

An innovative approach was used to improve practical applications of mechanogenetics: a field of science that improves the expression of genetics and activity of cells. T cells were mechanically destroyed by ultrasound. To genetically control cells, mechanical signals were used.

In this study, it was found that mechanogenetics system could be remote controlled and T cells can be manipulated by chimeric antigen receptor (CAR). Cancer cells can be targeted and killed with this innovative approach.

Researchers have engineered CAR-T cells with mechano-sensors, genetically transducing modules. This innovative approach was termed as CAR-T cell therapy, which provided a paradigm shift for the treatment of cancer.

Life-threatening complications develop when CAR-T cells are non-specifically targeted. Precision and accuracy of CAR-T cell immunotherapy was improved in an unprecedented manner. This innovative immunotherapy was used to target solid tumors. At the same time, off-tumor activities were minimized.

Microbubbles were conjugated to streptavidin and they were attached to cell surface. Mechanical vibration and stimulation of Piezo1 ion channels was performed by microbubbles when they were exposed to ultrasound waves. This led to the entry of calcium ions into the cell, triggering the following downstream pathways: calcineurin activation, NFAT dephoshorylation and translocation into the nucleus.

With recognition and destruction of targeted cancer cells, chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) was used to initiate the expression of genes.




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