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In Immunotherapy, Finally time for T Cells?

This article was originally published in Start Up

Executive Summary

Immunotherapy has seen its share of failures in recent months, but T-cell oriented therapies are by no means dead in the water and therapeutic cancer vaccines continue to attract funding. This month START-UP profiles three companies that nevertheless have been able to attract funding . They aim to avoid the difficulties that have sunk other efforts to commercialize immunotherapies. The firms are transplanting T cells along with same-donor bone marrow to fight infection, delivering powerful cytokines and other therapeutic payloads via T-cell receptor targeting, and genetically enhancing the ability of T-cell receptors to recognize antigens before growing those T cells in culture and re-infusing them into a patient's body.

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Start-Up Previews (11/2008)

A preview of the emerging health care companies profiled in the current issue of Start-Up. This month's profile group, "In Immunotherapy, Finally Time for T Cells?," features profiles of Adaptimmune, Altor BioScience, and Cell Medica. Plus these Start-Ups Across Health Care: Adnavance Technologies, Amplyx Pharmaceuticals, IlluminOss Medical, and KM Medical.

Adaptimmune Ltd.

Adaptimmune has recently spun out of MediGene AG to carry forward T cell receptor engineering with HIV as its initial target. The company's ex vivo approach sees a patients' own T cells harvested, those cells' receptors genetically enhanced for increased potency against certain infections or tumors in the manner of monoclonal antibody selection, and re-infused into the patient.

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