Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

NCI Seeks Collaborators, Licensees for 'First' miRNA Gene Used as Rx

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — The National Cancer Institute is looking to license or co-develop a microRNA sequence that it said can enhance the capacity of T-lymphocytes to recognize tumors in several kinds of cancer, according to the National Institutes of Health.
NIH said the technology, listed under patent application No. 60/940,172, is the “first reported use” of an miRNA gene to treat disease.
According to the agency, NCI discovered that genetically engineering T-lymphocytes with the gene, called miR-181a, “dramatically augmented the function of poorly responsive human tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes and TCR-engineered peripheral blood lymphocytes, resulting in potent anti-tumor reactivity.”
It also said that in a mouse model, miR-181a, “increased the function of self/tumor-specific CD8+ T cells enabling effective tumor destruction in the absence of vaccination or exogenous cytokines that were otherwise essential requirements.”
Pre-clinical work on miR-181a has been completed and clinical studies are being planned, the NIH said.
The IP is up for exclusive or non-exclusive license, NCI said. Additional information can be found here.
NCI also said that its Surgery Branch seeks statements of interest from parties that want to “develop, evaluate, or commercialize the therapeutic use of microRNA-181a in the adoptive immunotherapy of cancer.”

The Scan

Germline-Targeting HIV Vaccine Shows Promise in Phase I Trial

A National Institutes of Health-led team reports in Science that a broadly neutralizing antibody HIV vaccine induced bnAb precursors in 97 percent of those given the vaccine.

Study Uncovers Genetic Mutation in Childhood Glaucoma

A study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation ties a heterozygous missense variant in thrombospondin 1 to childhood glaucoma.

Gene Co-Expression Database for Humans, Model Organisms Gets Update

GeneFriends has been updated to include gene and transcript co-expression networks based on RNA-seq data from 46,475 human and 34,322 mouse samples, a new paper in Nucleic Acids Research says.

New Study Investigates Genomics of Fanconi Anemia Repair Pathway in Cancer

A Rockefeller University team reports in Nature that FA repair deficiency leads to structural variants that can contribute to genomic instability.