Exploiting Cytokine Secretion to Rapidly Produce Multivirus-specific T Cells for Adoptive Immunotherapy

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Viral infections remain a major cause of morbidity and mortality after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), and conventional small-molecule therapeutics often have modest benefit, high cost, and adverse effects. Adoptive transfer of donor-derived virus-specific T cells has proved feasible and safe after HSCT and to reconstitute immunity against cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, and adenovirus. Current protocols to generate these cytotoxic T cell lines are lengthy, taking up to 12 weeks. As viral infections often occur <30 days after HSCT, speedy production of virus-specific cytotoxic T cells lacking alloreactivity is highly desirable. We now describe a modified rapid selection method for production and characterization of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells specific for cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, and adenovirus in a single infusate. We use Ad5f35-pp65/latent membrane protein 2 vectors in a single procedure over a 48-hour time period and manufacture a product suited for clinical use. By simultaneously expanding a portion of the selected product, we can characterize phenotype and function of the infused product and link them with subsequent in vivo outcome.

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