Effective chimeric antigen receptor-modified T-cell (CAR-T) therapy for liver metastases (LM) will require innovative solutions to ensure efficient delivery and minimization of systemic toxicity. We previously demonstrated the safety of CAR-T hepatic artery infusions (HAI). We subsequently conducted the phase 1b HITM-SIR trial, in which six patients (pts) with CEA+ LM received anti-CEA CAR-T HAIs and selective internal radiation therapy (SIRT). The primary endpoint was safety with secondary assessments of biologic activity. Enrolled pts had a mean LM size of 6.4 cm, 4 pts had >10 LM, and pts received an average of two lines of prior systemic therapy. No grade 4 or 5 toxicities were observed, and there were no instances of severe cytokine-release syndrome (CRS) or neurotoxicity. The mean transduction efficiency was 60.4%. Following CAR-T HAI, reduced levels of GM-CSF-R, IDO, and PD-L1 were detected in LM, and serum CEA levels were stable or decreased in all subjects. Median survival time was 8 months (mean 11, range 4–31). Anti-CEA CAR-T HAI with subsequent SIRT was well tolerated, and biologic responses were demonstrated following failure of conventional therapy. HAI of CAR-T was once again confirmed not to be associated with severe CRS or neurotoxicity.
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We thank TNK therapeutics, a subsidiary of Sorrento Therapeutics, for providing the anti-CEA CAR-T-cell vector, which was obtained from the National Gene Vector Laboratory. We are grateful to Jason LaPorte and Jillian Gardell for their assistance with the correlative studies.
SirTex Medical provided the funding for study related costs. The Roger Williams Medical Center funded personnel who executed the production and clinical aspects of the study. Prometheus provided the Proleukin for infusion and CAR-T production.