The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center , is one of the world’s leading cancer research institutes. Its interdisciplinary scientists research the prevention, early detection, and treatment of cancer and other diseases in the laboratory and at patient bedside in the United States and other countries.Fred Hutch's mission statement is "the elimination of cancer and related diseases as causes of human suffering and death". Wikipedia.
Petersdorf E.W.,Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Blood | Year: 2013
Acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) afflicts as much as 80% of all patients who receive an unrelated donor hematopoietic cell transplant (HCT) for the treatment of blood disorders, even with optimal donor HLA matching and use of prophylactic immunosuppressive agents. Of patients who develop acute GVHD, many are at risk for chronic GVHD and bear the burden of considerable morbidity and lowered quality of life years after transplantation. The immunogenetic basis of GVHD has been the subject of intensive investigation, with the classic HLA genetic loci being the best-characterized determinants. Recent information on the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) region of chromosome 6 as an important source of untyped genetic variation has shed light on novel GVHD determinants. These data open new paradigms for understanding the genetic basis of GVHD.
Robins H.,Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Current Opinion in Immunology | Year: 2013
Advances in high-throughput sequencing have enabled the development of a powerful new technology for probing the adaptive immune system. Millions of B or T cell receptor sequences can be read in parallel from a single sample. The dynamics of an adaptive immune response, which is based on clonal expansion and contraction, can be monitored in real time at high sensitivity and the global properties of the adaptive immune repertoires can be studied. A large set of clinical applications for this technology are presently under study, with a few diagnostic applications for hematological malignancies already available. A review of this new field termed immunosequencing is presented. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Green M.L.,Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Blood | Year: 2013
The association between cytomegalovirus (CMV) reactivation and relapse was evaluated in a large cohort of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) (n = 761), acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) (n = 322), chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) (n = 646), lymphoma (n = 254), and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) (n = 371) who underwent allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) between 1995 and 2005. In multivariable models, CMV pp65 antigenemia was associated with a decreased risk of relapse by day 100 among patients with AML (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.56; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.3-0.9) but not in patients with ALL, lymphoma, CML, or MDS. The effect appeared to be independent of CMV viral load, acute graft-versus-host disease, or ganciclovir-associated neutropenia. At 1 year after HCT, early CMV reactivation was associated with reduced risk of relapse in all patients, but this did not reach significance for any disease subgroup. Furthermore, CMV reactivation was associated with increased nonrelapse mortality (HR = 1.31; 95% CI, 1.1-1.6) and no difference in overall mortality (HR = 1.05; 95% CI, 0.9-1.3). This report demonstrates a modest reduction in early relapse risk after HCT associated with CMV reactivation in a large cohort of patients without a benefit in overall survival.
Houghton A.M.,Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Nature Reviews Cancer | Year: 2013
Numerous epidemiological studies have consistently linked the presence of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) to the development of lung cancer, independently of cigarette smoking dosage. The mechanistic explanation for this remains poorly understood. Progress towards uncovering this link has been hampered by the heterogeneous nature of the two disorders: each is characterized by multiple sub-phenotypes of disease. In this Review, I discuss the nature of the link between the two diseases and consider specific mechanisms that operate in both COPD and lung cancer, some of which might represent either chemopreventive or chemotherapeutic targets. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.
Schmitt T.M.,Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Blood | Year: 2013
Many of the most promising tumor antigens for T-cell-based cancer immunotherapies are unmodified self-antigens. Unfortunately, the avidity of T cells specific for these antigens is limited by central tolerance during T-cell development in the thymus, resulting in decreased anti-tumor efficacy of these T cells. One approach to overcoming this obstacle is to mutate T-cell receptor (TCR) genes from naturally occurring T cells to enhance the affinity for the target antigen. These enhanced-affinity TCRs can then be developed for use in TCR gene therapy. Although TCRs with significantly enhanced affinity have been generated using this approach, it is not clear whether these TCRs, which bypass the affinity limits imposed by negative selection, remain unresponsive to the low levels of self-antigen generally expressed by some normal tissues. Here we show that 2 variants of a high-affinity WT1-specific TCR with enhanced affinity for WT1 are safe and do not mediate autoimmune tissue infiltration or damage when transduced into peripheral CD8 T cells and transferred in vivo. However, if expressed in developing T cells and subjected to thymic selection, the same enhanced-affinity TCRs signal tolerance mechanisms in the thymus, resulting in T cells with attenuated antigen sensitivity in the periphery.