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SU2C Meg Vosburg T-Cell Lymphoma Dream Team: Tailoring CAR-based Immunotherapy Strategies to T-cell Lymphoma

Helen Heslop, MD
Leader

Helen Heslop, MD

Director
Center for Cell and Gene Therapy
Baylor College of Medicine

Gianpietro Dotti, MD
Co-leader

Gianpietro Dotti, MD

Director
Immunotherapy Program
University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center

Overview

Cancer immunotherapy has had a tremendous impact on a wide range of cancers, including B-cell lymphomas. However, it has not yet been effective in those lymphomas that originate primarily from T cells. The scientific challenge is in finding a therapy that can attack the cancerous T cells while leaving normal cells intact.

The SU2C Meg Vosburg T-cell Lymphoma Dream Team is testing engineered cells that carry molecules known as chimeric antigen receptors, or CARs, which can lock onto proteins on the surface of cancerous T cells and destroy them. Finding the best combination of CARs and engineered cell types is a key goal of the Dream Team.

CAR therapy is usually custom-built for each patient. The team is trying to find a way to develop CAR cells on an “off-the-shelf” basis so the therapy will be more available to patients and less expensive.

This team in named in honor of Mary Margaret (Meg) Moretti Vosburg, a lifelong learner, educator and humanitarian, who died May 26, 2018, after a hard-fought battle with lymphoma at the age of 51.

Amount Of Funding

$8 million

Principals

Baylor College of Medicine:

  • Malcolm K. Brenner, MD, PhD, investigator
  • Carlos Ramos, MD, investigator
  • Maksim Mamonkin, PhD, young investigator
  • LaQuisa Hill, MD, young investigator
  • Rayne Rouce, MD, young investigator
  • Natasha Lapteva, PhD, investigator

University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill:

  • Barbara Savoldo, MD, PhD, investigator
  • Anne Beaven, MD, investigator
  • Natalie Grover, MD, young investigator
  • Joel Parker, PhD, investigator
  • Paul Eldridge, PhD, investigator

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center:

  • Katy Rezvani, MD, PhD, Dream Team principal
  • Elizabeth J. Shpall, MD, investigator
  • May Daher, MD, young investigator

Wake Forest Baptist Health Comprehensive Cancer Center:

  • Bayard Powell, MD, Dream Team principal
  • Timothy S. Pardee, MD PhD, investigator
  • Wei Zhang, PhD, investigator
  • Zanetta S. Lamar, MD, young investigator

Advocates

  • ​Patty Spears, UNC Lineberger Patient Research Advocacy Group Gustavo Ayala, MD, University of Texas in Houston, parent of a teenager with T-cell lymphoma
  • Bambi Grilley, director of Clinical Research and Early Product Development at Cell and Gene Therapy at Baylor College of Medicine
  • Ruth Sorelle, retired journalist and survivor of NK-T cell lymphoma