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. 2017 Jun 1;22:1644-1654.
doi: 10.2741/4563.

FLAG-tagged CD19-specific CAR-T Cells Eliminate CD19-bearing Solid Tumor Cells in vitro and in vivo

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FLAG-tagged CD19-specific CAR-T Cells Eliminate CD19-bearing Solid Tumor Cells in vitro and in vivo

Robert Berahovich et al. Front Biosci (Landmark Ed). .

Abstract

Autologous T cells expressing chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) specific for CD19 have demonstrated remarkable efficacy as therapeutics for B cell malignancies. In the present study, we generated FLAG-tagged CD19-specific CAR-T cells (CD19-FLAG) and compared them to their non-tagged counterparts for their effects on solid and hematological cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. For solid tumors, we used HeLa cervical carcinoma cells engineered to overexpress CD19 (HeLa-CD19), and for hematological cancer we used Raji Burkitt's lymphoma cells, which endogenously express CD19. Like non-tagged CD19 CAR-T cells, CD19-FLAG CAR-T cells expanded in culture >100-fold and exhibited potent cytolytic activity against both HeLa-CD19 and Raji cells in vitro. CD19-FLAG CAR-T cells also secreted significantly more IFN-gamma and IL-2 than the control T cells. In vivo, CD19-FLAG CAR-T cells significantly blocked the growth of HeLa-CD19 solid tumors, increased tumor cleaved caspase-3 levels, and expanded systemically. CD19-FLAG CAR-T cells also significantly reduced Raji tumor burden and extended mouse survival. These results demonstrate the strong efficacy of FLAG-tagged CD19 CAR-T cells in solid and hematological cancer models.

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