CAR-T is a groundbreaking personalized cancer therapy with tremendous potential to drive the patient’s own immune cells to specifically target and kill cancer cells. Because the development of this therapy is still in the early phase, new tools are needed to provide a quick potency assay to assess the cytotoxicity of the therapeutic T-cells prior to infusion into the patient and to monitor their long-term cancer killing potential.
CAR-T are engineered T-cells which are genetically modified ex vivo to express proteins on their surface. These specifically recognize cancer cells (see our review for more) and kill them via a cytolysis process once they are infused back into the patient’s body. This modification of T-cells has initiated development of a whole new range of treatments against different types of cancer.
However, the major obstacles that need to be addressed in the development of this promising anti-cancer therapeutics, is ensuring that these cells will achieve their goal by attacking the right target and will persist inside human’s body.