Recent advances in T-cell engineering for use in immunotherapy

David M. Kranz, Preeti Sharma

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Adoptive T-cell therapies have shown exceptional promise in the treatment of cancer, especially B-cell malignancies. Two distinct strategies have been used to redirect the activity of ex vivo engineered T cells. In one case, the well-known ability of the T-cell receptor (TCR) to recognize a specific peptide bound to a major histocompatibility complex molecule has been exploited by introducing a TCR against a cancer-associated peptide/human leukocyte antigen complex. In the other strategy, synthetic constructs called chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) that contain antibody variable domains (single-chain fragments variable) and signaling domains have been introduced into T cells. Whereas many reviews have described these two approaches, this review focuses on a few recent advances of significant interest. The early success of CARs has been followed by questions about optimal configurations of these synthetic constructs, especially for efficacy against solid tumors. Among the many features that are important, the dimensions and stoichiometries of CAR/antigen complexes at the synapse have recently begun to be appreciated. In TCR-mediated approaches, recent evidence that mutated peptides (neoantigens) serve as targets for endogenous T-cell responses suggests that these neoantigens may also provide new opportunities for adoptive T-cell therapies with TCRs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2344
StatePublished - 2016


  • Chimeric antigen receptor
  • Immunotherapy
  • Neoantigens
  • Receptor
  • T cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Recent advances in T-cell engineering for use in immunotherapy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this