A form of cancer immunotherapy termed adoptive T cell transfer (ACT), in which a patient’s own T cells are engineered to recognize and attack cancer cells, can induce durable complete remissions in patients with advanced hematologic malignancies. By contrast, a similar approach has thus far failed to work in most patients with solid malignancies, the leading cause of adult cancer-related deaths. Two critical gaps in knowledge have limited the ability of ACT to be successfully applied to solid cancers: 1) understanding which antigens on the surface of cancer cells can be targeted by T cells that do not have the potential to cross- react with and injure normal tissues, and 2) insight into what factor(s) restrain the ability of transferred T cells to infiltrate, expand, and persist within a solid tumor mass. Using diverse techniques, including single-cell sequencing, biophysical measurements of T cell receptor (TCR) affinity, genetic engineering, and structural immunobiology, the Klebanoff laboratory seeks to address both factors currently limiting the application of ACT for advanced solid cancers.
Christopher A. Klebanoff, MD
Assistant attending and member, IOS-HOPP, MSKCC
Research FocusPhysician-scientist Christopher A. Klebanoff studies T cell immunobiology with an emphasis on adoptive T cell immunotherapy for the treatment of solid malignancies.
EducationMD, Emory University School of Medicine
- Klebanoff, C.A., Rosenberg, S.A., Restifo, N.P. Prospects of gene-engineered T cell immunotherapy for solid cancers. Nature Medicine, 22: 26-36, 2016.
- Klebanoff, C.A., Scott, C.D., Leonardi, A.J., Yamamoto, T., et al. Memory T cell–driven differentiation of naive cells impairs adoptive immunotherapy. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 126: 318-334, 2016.
- NIH Fellows Award for Research Excellence (2013)
- NCI/Center for Cancer Research Post Doctoral Research Fellow of the Year (2011)
- AOA National Medical Honor Society (2006)
- Howard Hughes Medical Institute continuing support scholarship (2004-2006)
- Merk Index Award (2000)