Workshop A Tuesday, March 19

9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Examining the Tumor Microenvironment


Workshop Leader: Anahid Jewett, Professor & Director of Tumor Immunology Laboratory, UCLA School of Dentistry and Medicine
  To challenge the ineffective inflammatory responses within the tumor microenvironment due to inactivation of NK cells which support tumor evasion, we must identify the factors which contribute to the dysfunctional state of NK cells in patients and understand the intricate net of interactions occurring between the tumor cells and immune cells within the tumor microenvironment. Attend this workshop to learn how the tumor escapes NK cell’s ability to contain them, and establishes itself with the aid of other tumor supportive cells, which are also controlled by the NK cells, within the tumor microenvironment. Attendees will learn:
  • The many challenges posed by solid and liquid tumors and their varying tumor microenvironments
  • Techniques to create an effective NK cell-based therapy that are capable of overcoming the immunosuppressive environments of tumors, and understand their mechanisms of actions

Anahid Jewett, Professor & Director of Tumor Immunology Laboratory, UCLA School of Dentistry and Medicine

Dr. Jewett is Professor and Director of tumor immunology laboratory in the Division of Oral Biology and Medicine, and Weintraub Center for reconstructive biotechnology at the UCLA School of Medicine and Dentistry. She has membership in Johnsson Comprehensive Cancer Center (JCCC) and is a member of UCLA Tumor Immunology subgroup. She is well-known nationally and internationally for her contribution to the field of NK biology, tumor immunology and cancer immunotherapy. She has received a large number of honors and awards and holds memberships in many professional organizations and societies. She has chaired a number of important senate and non-senate committees at UCLA and University of California Regents, and has been instrumental in shaping the graduate studies for the health professionals at UCLA. She chairs and teaches several graduate level courses, and her laboratory is sought out by many foreign and domestic scholars who spend several years to receive training in NK studies. She serves on the editorial board of many prestigious journals, and has been a reviewer on the board of National Institute of Health study sections. She holds several patents, and has given more than 200 invited lectures and presentations nationally and internationally and has published more than 100 high impact journal articles, reviews, commentaries and book chapters in the field of cancer. She has research collaborations with investigators from China, Slovenia, Mexico, Poland, Germany, Thailand, Japan, Portugal, South Korea and Sweden. She has organized a number of conferences on cancer immunity nationally and internationally. She has trained more than 150 graduate students and health professionals in her laboratory, many of whom are leaders in their respective institutions. She has served on review panels for grants from many countries including England, France, the Netherlands, Qatar, Poland and Israel to name a few. She has received several NIH grant funding as well as from other sources for her studies.

One of Dr. Jewett’s major contributions to science and NK cell biology was the identification, characterization and the establishment of the concept of split anergy in NK cells. Equally important was Dr. Jewett’s discovery demonstrating that NK cells were important for the elimination, selection and differentiation of cancer stem cells as well as healthy stem cells. Most recently she has identified, characterized, and patented a novel technology to expand large numbers of super-charged NK cells which are in use in clinical trials of cancer patients. In addition, she has developed a formulation with probiotic bacteria to prevent and treat cancer patients in combination with super-charged NK cells.

Workshop B Tuesday, March 19

9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Unique Advantages of γδT Cells for Adoptive Immunotherapy


Workshop Leader: Lawrence Lamb, Chief Scientific Officer, Incysus Therapeutics Inc. Workshop Leader: Stewart Abbot, CSO, Adicet Bio

 

As the NK field develops, there is a drive to see success in other innate immunotherapies. γδT cells are proving to be a viable and effective option. Attend this workshop to hear
about the incremental successes of γδT cell-based therapy over the past several years and the future directions by enhancing drug-resistant immunotherapy with checkpoint inhibition.

Attendees will learn:

  • How to address the problem of γδT cell manufacturing
  • About the combination of chemotherapy and genemodified chemotherapy-resistant γδT cells as a strategy for primary glioblastoma

Lawrence Lamb, Chief Scientific Officer, Incysus Therapeutics Inc.

Dr. Lamb was first to describe the association between relapse-free survival and gdT cell recovery in bone marrow transplant patients. For 26 years, most recently as Professor of Medicine and Director of the Cell Therapy Laboratory at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Dr. Lamb developed the scientific support for gdT cell-based immunotherapies. Today, this work has brought us to the first clinical trials for allogeneic gdT cell therapy in leukemia patients undergoing haploidentical stem cell transplants and the first gene-modified gdT cell therapy for glioblastoma. Dr. Lamb currently directs clinical and translational research strategy and operations for Incysus Therapeutics.

 

Stewart Abbot, CSO, Adicet Bio

Stewart Abbot is the chief scientific officer at Adicet Bio. He holds a B.Sc. in Biological Sciences (Edinburgh), M.Sc. in Biomedical Engineering (Glasgow) and Ph.D. in Pathology (London). His academic career focused on basic and translational science initiatives in vascular biology, pharmacology and toxicology. He joined Amersham Biosciences in 2000 and developed Amersham’s and, following acquisition, General Electric’s stem cell-based drug screening capabilities. He was head of the Molecular and Cellular Biology research laboratory at GE’s Global Research Center from 2004-2007. In 2007 he joined Celgene to develop novel cell-based therapeutic candidates and subsequently development of external cellular therapy R&D collaborations and alliances. In 2015 he joined Fate Therapeutics and held roles of VP translational research and chief development officer. He joined Adicet Bio. in June 2018 and his current role oversees all research associated with genetically engineered gamma delta T cell-based therapy development.

 

Workshop C Tuesday, March 19

1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Addressing Contact Dependent Factors that Promote NK Cell Development


Workshop Leader: Emily Mace, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Columbia University

 

Natural killer cell development is a poorly understood process especially the nature of regulatory processes that shape NK cell functional maturation. To design better and more effective NK cell-based immunotherapies, understanding the factors that promote NK cell development is paramount. Attend this workshop to hear about the latest findings that have advanced understanding of the generation of NK cell heterogeneity and functional phenotypes.

 

Attendees will learn:

  • How to implement the latest findings in the understanding of NK cell generation
  • Techniques to design better and more effective NK cell-based immunotherapies by understanding the factors that promote NK cell functional maturation

Emily Mace, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Columbia University

Emily Mace studies human natural killer cell development, particularly with quantitative image analysis and cell biological approaches. This includes the use of highly spatially and temporally resolved and super-resolution microscopy to understand interactions between NK cell precursors and the microenvironment. She also identifies novel requirements for human NK cell development through the identification and study of rare patients with NK cell deficiencies. This has included the characterization of NK cell functional and cell biological phenotypes associated with GATA2, IRF8 and Coronin 1A deficiencies. She is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York, where she serves as the junior faculty representative to the American Association of Medical Colleges. She has published more than 60 papers and is an American Society for Hematology Scholar, as well as an Associate Member of the American Society for Cell Biology’s Women in Cell Biology Committee and a member of the Biophysical Society’s Committee for the Promotion of Women. Her work is funded by the National Institutes of Health-National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Workshop D Tuesday, March 19

1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Logic and Rationale Behind the High Doses of High Potency NK Cells and their Therapeutic Application


Workshop Leader: Robert Igarashi, CSO, Cyto-Sen Therapeutics

 

As effective NK cell therapies for cancer therapy begin to fulfil their potential, a key challenge has been the availability of an effective methodology for the efficient production
of large doses of NK cells with high anti-tumour potency. Attend this workshop to understand the logic and rationale behind CytoSen’s approach for high NK cell doses and the therapeutic application of them.

Attendees will learn:

  •  The reasons for needing high doses of NK cells
  • The potential of NK cell therapies which have efficient production of large doses of NK cells

Robert Igarashi, CSO, Cyto-Sen Therapeutics

Robert Igarashi, Ph.D. is the president and co-founder of CytoSen Therapeutics. Dr. Igarashi has a diverse background in life sciences and has played an instrumental role in the development of the particle based natural killer (NK) cell stimulating technology. He has brought his biochemical and physico-chemical expertise to combine with immunology for developing and refining the nanoparticle based method for NK cell stimulation that could be used for ex vivo expansion as well as in vivo stimulation of therapeutic NK cells.He has been crucial in understanding the biochemical aspects of the plasma membrane particles interacting with NK cells and how they can be further innovated to add novel therapeutic dimensions for adoptive NK cell therapy.