Tom Thatcher ttha at
Tue Feb 4 21:43:49 EST 1997

In article <Pine.SOL.3.91.970204092639.10836C-100000 at post>,
Rachel Teitelbaum <teitelba at> wrote:
>There was a while back a treatment I thought was promising, but have lost 
>sight of the follow-up.  Anyone out there know what happened?  They were 
[description of transfecting B7 into tumor cells]

Well, yeah, there are a lot of things you can transfect into a tumor
cell line to make it more easily rejected when you inject it into 
a host (mouse); costimulatory molecules, cytokines, MHC overexpressing
constructs, etc.  The problem is how to direct the immunity to 
a pre-existing tumor. 

I suppose the following approach is theoretically possible: Surgical
oncologist removes a tumor from patient x.  A sample of the tumor cells
is transfected with an immunostimulatory construct, then injected back
into the patient.  The injected cells might raise specific anti-tumor
effector cells, and if the tumor cells were irradiated, they would be
prevented from growing themselves.  This would be a treatment not
to cure the primary tumor, which is rarely fatal anyway, but to prevent
metastases.  However, such a treatment would have to be performed on
an individual basis, would be horribly expensive, and almost certainly
less than 100% effective.

Tom Thatcher                          | You can give a PC to a Homo habilis,
University of Rochester Cancer Center | and he'll use it, but he'll use it
ttha at           | to crack nuts.

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