Engineering improved CAR-T cell therapies

Engineering improved CAR-T cell therapies

Project details

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cell therapy is a new cancer treatment that ‘trains’ a patient’s immune system to eradicate tumours. While CAR-T cell therapy has achieved 50-90% complete remission rates in specific leukaemia (B-ALL) and lymphoma (NHL) patients, the broader use of CAR-T cell therapy as a front-line treatment remains limited by life-threatening toxicities in up to 50% of patients.

This project involves testing de novo designed and structure-validated transmembrane (TM) domain sequences to precisely control CAR-T cell potency and toxicity. The aim is to test our novel TM panel in anti-leukemic human CAR-T cell therapies and assess their function and toxicity in comparison to commercial CAR-T cell products.

Skills learnt: primary CAR-T cell production, cell culture, flow cytometry, killing/cytokine/proliferation assays, in vivo efficacy/safety studies.

About our research group

The Call lab is co-directed by Matthew and Melissa Call and focuses on understanding the basic mechanisms and effects of transmembrane (TM) interactions by cell-surface immune receptors.

Our research group (2 post-docs, 3 PhD students and 2 research assistants) utilises knowledge from structural studies and mutational analysis of novel and conventional TM domains to examine functional consequences of transmembrane interactions in both cell culture assays and in vivo mouse models.

Projects within the laboratory span across multiple disciplines including structural biology, molecular biology and immunology, and members of the lab receive strong training in one or more of these research areas. .


Email supervisors




Ashleigh Davey
Structural Biology division

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