Multi-targeted Antigen-Specific T Cells (MTCs) Loaded with Cytokine
Our most advanced modality, MTCs, are designed to prime T cells against precisely selected intracellular antigens and loads the cells with a cytokine. These are potent cytokines that enhance T cell proliferation and differentiation and, in the case of interleukin-12 (IL-12), can modify the immune-suppressive nature of the tumor microenvironment.
We have two Phase 1 studies investigating this technology:
- RPTR-147 antigen-specific T cells are expanded and then loaded with IL-15
- RPTR-168 antigen-specific T cells are expanded and then loaded with IL-12
Our MTCs loaded with cytokine are the first and only peripheral-blood-derived cytokine loaded T cell product candidates in the clinic today. This modular approach is designed to be optimized and tailored to target many different tumor types.
T Cell Targeted Cytokines
This modality leverages and builds on our expertise at controlling the precise delivery of cytokines to T cells. Our targeted cytokines are designed to leverage the technologies developed for MTCs to create a non-cellular, injectable product candidate that can be used to direct cytokines to specific T cell subsets in vivo, or inside the body.
Our first targeted candidate is based on targeting IL-12. IL-12 has been shown to activate natural killer (NK) cells and dendritic cells (DCs), and to repolarize myeloid cells to make them more inflammatory so they can reverse the immune suppressive nature in the tumor microenvironment. This would make the cancer more susceptible to attack by antigen-specific T cells.
We also have discovery efforts pursuing IL-15. IL-15 is a potent inducer of T cell proliferation, leading to persistence of T cells and has been shown to prevent exhaustion of those T cells in the tumor.
Additional Discovery Programs
We are also exploring a third modality that leverages lipid nanoparticles to deliver antigens identified with DECODE. We intend to use these in a similar way to direct the antigens we discover from DECODE to restore normal immune balance with potential application in autoimmune disorders.
Regulatory T Cell
Research to identify the specificity of T cell receptors (TCR) of T regulatory cells for their use as a new modality is ongoing using our DECODE platform. We believe this has the potential to allow us to create TCR-T regulatory cells to treat autoimmune disorders.