Grant ID DP150061
Awarded On November 19, 2014
Title Preclinical Development of a Therapeutic Enzyme for Immune Checkpoint Inhibition in Cancer
Program Academic Research
Award Mechanism Bridging the Gap: Early Translational Research Awards
Institution/Organization The University of Texas at Austin
Principal Investigator/Program Director George Georgiou
Cancer Sites Lung and Bronchus, Melanoma
Contracted Amount $1,790,486
Lay Summary

Cancer cells only survive if they can keep the immune system from recognizing and eliminating them. One way that some forms of cancers do this is through the product of the immunosuppressive molecule Kyn. Kyn is produced when the amino acid Tryptophan is oxidized by one of three possible enzymes (i.e. IDO1, IDO2, TDO). Kyn is then transported outside the cell where it initiates ‘tumor tolerance’ by impeding the function of crucial cancer-fighting T cells. Therapeutics developed to specifically reverse this kind of tumor-induced immune suppression (i.e. “immune checkpoint inhibitors”) are increasingly popular, as evident by the number of recently adopted clinical trials.

In the case of Kyn, ...

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