Genetically modulating T-cell function to target cancer

Efrat Merhavi-Shoham, Astar Haga-Friedman, Cyrille J. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


The adoptive transfer of tumor-specific T-lymphocytes holds promise for the treatment of metastatic cancer. Genetic modulation of T-lymphocytes using TCR transfer with tumor-specific TCR genes is an attractive strategy to generate anti-tumor response, especially against large solid tumors. Recently, several clinical trials have demonstrated the therapeutic potential of this approach which lead to impressive tumor regression in cancer patients. Still, several factors may hinder the clinical benefit of this approach, such as the type of cells to modulate, the vector configuration or the safety of the procedure. In the present review we will aim at giving an overview of the recent developments related to the immune modulation of the anti-tumor adaptive response using genetically engineered lymphocytes and will also elaborate the development of other genetic modifications to enhance their anti-tumor immune response.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-22
Number of pages9
JournalSeminars in Cancer Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank the members of our laboratory for helpful discussion. CJC was supported by the Marie-Curie International Reintegration Grant ( 224851 ) from the European Community and by the Israel Science Foundation .


  • Genetic immune-modulation
  • TCR
  • TCR-gene transfer
  • Tumor antigens


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