Evaluation of TCR gene editing achieved by TALENs, CRISPR/Cas9, and megaTAL nucleases

Mark J. Osborn, Beau R. Webber, Friederike Knipping, Cara Lin Lonetree, Nicole Tennis, Anthony P. DeFeo, Amber N. McElroy, Colby G. Starker, Catherine Lee, Sarah Merkel, Troy C. Lund, Karen S. Kelly-Spratt, Michael C. Jensen, Daniel F. Voytas, Christof Von Kalle, Manfred Schmidt, Richard Gabriel, Keli L. Hippen, Jeffrey S. Miller, Andrew M. ScharenbergJakub Tolar, Bruce R. Blazar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

77 Scopus citations


Present adoptive immunotherapy strategies are based on the re-targeting of autologous T-cells to recognize tumor antigens. As T-cell properties may vary significantly between patients, this approach can result in significant variability in cell potency that may affect therapeutic outcome. More consistent results could be achieved by generating allogeneic cells from healthy donors. An impediment to such an approach is the endogenous T-cell receptors present on T-cells, which have the potential to direct dangerous off-tumor antihost reactivity. To address these limitations, we assessed the ability of three different TCR-α-targeted nucleases to disrupt T-cell receptor expression in primary human T-cells. We optimized the conditions for the delivery of each reagent and assessed off-target cleavage. The megaTAL and CRISPR/Cas9 reagents exhibited the highest disruption efficiency combined with low levels of toxicity and off-target cleavage, and we used them for a translatable manufacturing process to produce safe cellular substrates for next-generation immunotherapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)570-581
Number of pages12
JournalMolecular Therapy
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

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