Chimeric Nk Receptor and Methods for Treating Cancer

Natural killer cells are innate effector cells serving as a first line of defense against certain viral infections and tumors. Natural killer cells have the ability to recognize and kill a variety of different tumor types using specific cell surface receptors to recognize tumors. These activating NK cell receptors that recognize tumor cells have been identified in mice and humans natural killer cells.

Dartmouth researchers have now found that a chimeric NK receptor molecule composed of a natural killer cell receptor (e.g., a C-type lectin-like NK cell receptor) and an immune signaling receptor (e.g., a CD3-zeta or Fc epsilon receptor-gamma chain) expressed on the surface of a T cell can facilitate killing of a tumor cell and production of proinflammatory cytokines. The chimeric receptor molecules provide a means for the patient’s own immune cells to recognize and activate anti-tumor immunity and establish long-term, specific, anti-tumor responses. Accordingly, the chimeric receptor molecules are useful for treating tumors or preventing growth of dormant or residual tumor cells. The initial findings have been published in the journal Blood (Zhang et al. 106:1544 (2005)).

This technology is claimed in the published Patent Corporation Treaty Application No. PCT/US2005/031100. We are seeking an industrial partner interested in its commercialization. (Ref: J267)

Type of Offer: Licensing

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