JOURNAL ARTICLE

The Tol2 transposon system mediates the genetic engineering of T-cells with CD19-specific chimeric antigen receptors for B-cell malignancies

T Tsukahara, N Iwase, K Kawakami, M Iwasaki, C Yamamoto, K Ohmine, R Uchibori, T Teruya, H Ido, Y Saga, M Urabe, H Mizukami, A Kume, M Nakamura, R Brentjens, K Ozawa
Gene Therapy 2015, 22 (2): 209-15
25427612
Engineered T-cell therapy using a CD19-specific chimeric antigen receptor (CD19-CAR) is a promising strategy for the treatment of advanced B-cell malignancies. Gene transfer of CARs to T-cells has widely relied on retroviral vectors, but transposon-based gene transfer has recently emerged as a suitable nonviral method to mediate stable transgene expression. The advantages of transposon vectors compared with viral vectors include their simplicity and cost-effectiveness. We used the Tol2 transposon system to stably transfer CD19-CAR into human T-cells. Normal human peripheral blood lymphocytes were co-nucleofected with the Tol2 transposon donor plasmid carrying CD19-CAR and the transposase expression plasmid and were selectively propagated on NIH3T3 cells expressing human CD19. Expanded CD3(+) T-cells with stable and high-level transgene expression (~95%) produced interferon-γ upon stimulation with CD19 and specifically lysed Raji cells, a CD19(+) human B-cell lymphoma cell line. Adoptive transfer of these T-cells suppressed tumor progression in Raji tumor-bearing Rag2(-/-)γc(-/-) immunodeficient mice compared with control mice. These results demonstrate that the Tol2 transposon system could be used to express CD19-CAR in genetically engineered T-cells for the treatment of refractory B-cell malignancies.

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