A single therapy with numerous applications
Recent advances in T-cell engineering and antibody therapeutics have led to phenomenal clinical outcomes for cancer patients, and now the Cambridge-Massachusetts-based company Unum Therapeutics is working to combine these powerful treatment modalities to build a new class of combination cancer therapies. Read more
Unum is developing cellular immunotherapies based on an antibody-coupled T-cell receptor, or ACTR. When ACTR T cells are combined with a therapeutic antibody that recognizes tumor cells, ACTR T cells kill the tumors. Unlike other approaches (such as CAR-T or TCR), in which a cell’s receptor is trained to treat a narrow set of tumors, Unum’s therapy is not restricted to a particular target and may be used in many different cancer types.
Unum’s lead program, which is based on the combination of ACTR and the antibody rituximab, is currently undergoing Phase I clinical testing to evaluate safety and efficacy in certain forms of lymphoma. The company is also working with partners to use the ACTR technology in combination with novel antibodies to attack both blood and solid tumor cancers. Unum is on track to advance multiple combinations into clinical testing within the next few years.