Immunology
AACR 2021: A case study of T-cell modulation for cancer immunotherapies
During a plenary session at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) 2021 virtual meeting held April 9-14, speakers described impressive work that researchers have done to modify and target T cells as a means of treating cancers. Read More
A CRISPR on-off switch for genes controls expression without altering DNA
A new gene silencing tool allows scientists to switch genes on and off without altering genetic sequences. The tool, described in a paper published in Cell on April 9, uses a modified CRISPR-Cas9 system to introduce reversible epigenetic changes that control gene expression. Read More
2nd-gen stem cell-derived CAR gene therapy is more durable, effective against HIV
A novel second-generation chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-based approach targeting HIV infection using the genetic modification of hematopoietic stem cells shows promise in preclinical models. The details of the study were published in PLOS Pathogens on April 1. Read More
Scientists connect gene to cancer metastasis for the first time
Researchers have identified new functionality of a previously underappreciated gene, leucine-rich repeat neuronal 4 C-terminal like (LRRN4CL), which is overexpressed in melanoma cells. They believe LRRN4CL plays an important role in cancer metastasis to the lungs and describe their findings in Communications Biology on March 23. Read More
Scientists develop ultraspecific CAR T cells that kill only cancer cells
Scientists have devised a two-step engineering circuit that precisely targets solid tumors with chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells. The engineering feat could be the next step in treating solid tumors using therapeutic T cells, a treatment that has remained out of reach for many cancer patients. The new method was detailed in a Science article on March 12. Read More
Combo of CRISPR, informatics helps uncover genetic regulators of immune cells
A new computational tool that uses CRISPR and multimodal single-cell sequencing data can provide insights into the function and regulation of human genes. The study, published in Nature Genetics on March 1, provides details on the molecular regulation of immune checkpoint inhibitors. Read More
The next generation of COVID-19 vaccines: Gallo on next steps
What will the next generation of COVID-19 vaccines look like? In the first of a two-part series, The Science Advisory Board spoke with pioneering virology researcher Dr. Robert Gallo to get his thoughts on what a next-generation COVID-19 vaccine might look like, and which candidates are in the running for marketing authorization. Read More
mRNA vaccines are successful for COVID-19. But what about cancer?
Advances in platform technology for the development of messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines have led to the authorization of several COVID-19 vaccines. But scientists are also working on developing mRNA vaccines to protect against or treat other diseases, such as cancer. This includes a hydrogel-based RNA vaccine, the design of which is discussed in an article published in Nano Letters on February 1. Read More
Proteomics helps researchers pick the best anti-SARS-CoV-2 nanobodies
A new high-throughput proteomics-based strategy to identify tiny antibody fragments -- called nanobodies -- may provide an efficient and effective method for developing therapeutics against the deadly SARS-CoV-2 virus -- including variants. The findings were published in Cell Systems on February 15. Read More
Multiomics approach profiles molecular characteristics of glioblastoma
A team of more than 40 investigators has created a profile of the genes, proteins, infiltrating cells, and signaling pathways of the deadly brain cancer glioblastoma. The findings could lead to better patient care, according to the authors of a new study published February 11 in Cancer Cell. Read More
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