Adoptive immunotherapy, or cell therapies, is undergoing a period of growth and enthusiasm following encouraging data regarding its clinical efficacy. Virus-directed adoptive immunotherapies are under investigation for the treatment of chronic viral infections such as HIV and for viruses that cause morbidity and mortality in immunosuppressed settings such as bone marrow transplantation. In addition, adoptive immunotherapies are poised to take a prominent role in both hematologic malignancies and solid tumors.
The first clinical use of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-modified T cells was in HIV infection. In this setting, the CAR was composed of the receptor for the HIV envelope protein, namely the extracellular and transmembrane portions of the CD4 protein, fused to the T cell receptor (TCR)-ζ signaling molecule (CD4z CAR). The proposed mechanism of action was for transduced T cells to lyse HIV envelope–expressing T cells……
Immunotherapy for cancer has a long and somewhat checkered history; the first observations that immune system engagement has antitumor effects are often attributed to William Coley, who observed regression of sarcoma following severe bacterial infections in the 1890s. However, the seminal finding that allogeneic immune reconstitution after bone marrow transplant had antileukemic effects definitively identified the anticancer effects of immune cells……
Maus MV et al. Adoptive Immunotherapy for Cancer or Viruses. Annual review of immunology. 2014;32:189-225.