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Being Alive
Targeted Genetics' CTL Study
Henry E. Chang
February 5, 1994
Being Alive 1994 Feb 5: 9

Investigators at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have initiated a gene therapy trial, sponsored by Targeted Genetics Corp. of Seattle. The trial will use genetically modified cells that specifically recognize and destroy HIV-infected cells for patients without opportunistic infections and with CD4 counts between 200 and 500.

The treatment involves the removal of cytotoxic lymphocytes (CTLs) that recognize and kill HIV-infected cells from a patient's blood and then the expansion of the CTLs to very large numbers in a cell culture. These HIV-specific CTLs will then be reinfused into the patient in an attempt to amplify the immune response to HIV and to prevent or delay the destruction of the patient's immune system.

The study will enroll 15 HIV+ patients. Each will receive a maximum of four infusions at increasing cell doses of modified CTLs over a period of two years. The goal of this study is to evaluate the safety and efficacy of this type of treatment, known as adoptive immunotherapy.

The first patient received the first course of cell infusion last month, but the study is still open for enrollment. For information, you can write the study investigators, Drs. Philip Greenberg and Stanley Riddell, at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98104.