Apr 24, 2023
Jeff Liter is the CEO and Founder of Luminary Therapeutics, which is using gamma delta cells in their approach to CART-T cell therapy because of the ability of these cells to infiltrate solid tumors. With a multi-targeting system, Luminary has demonstrated promise treating multiple types of solid tumors, blood tumors, and autoimmune diseases. Their goal is to create a scalable model to manufacture allogeneic cells to drive down the cost and availability of effective cell therapies.
Jeff explains, "We're focused primarily on three big challenges in the CAR-T industry. The first is the overall manufacturing approach and cost. The second is why do CAR-Ts, to date, not work in solid tumors. And then finally, the third is antigen escape and relapse of patients currently being treated by CAR-T therapies."
"We have moved into coming back to the manufacturing area. We have moved into an allogeneic platform, which for your listeners, if they're not familiar with that term, means that we can make multiple products from one healthy donor. And we do that in a very special way, using gamma delta cells and preserving both subsets of the gamma delta cells. Then we also add some immune cloaking with our non-viral gene engineering, and that makes us very unique on the allogeneic front."
"If you look at those 800 companies, probably 80, 85% of them use what's called alpha beta normal white blood T cells. A fair number of companies, maybe 7% to 8%, use NK cells. And then there's a new group using a different kind of subset of cells called IPSC. But in the gamma delta, there are only 12 to maybe 15 companies. So we're very differentiated on that front from the 800. And then, as I noted, we are the only company to have both Vdelta1 and Vdelta2 subsets in our final product."
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