The primary focus of Dr. Smith’s laboratory research is to enhance the efficacy of cellular therapy for multiple myeloma (MM). Towards this goal, the myeloma adoptive cell therapy laboratory group:
- Designs, characterizes, and evaluates novel genetically engineered cell therapies for MM.
- Uses mouse models and primary samples from patients treated on CAR T cell clinical trials to gain understanding of the role of T cell / tumor cell / tumor microenvironment interactions, and how these may impact outcomes of cellular therapies.
- Incorporates our understanding of mechanisms of resistance to adoptive cellular therapy in next generation vector development.
- Translates promising new cellular therapeutics to the clinic.
By studying MM as a model, we hope to advance the field of adoptive cellular therapy as a whole.
Human derived, optimized CAR T cell vectors stemming from our group’s work targeting BCMA are under clinical investigation for the treatment of advanced multiple myeloma across several trials. Clinical trials of CAR T cell therapy targeting GPRC5D, a novel target for the immunotherapy of MM we described, are in late stages of development.
Our work is recently supported by: the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS), the American Society of Hematology (ASH), the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF), the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC), the Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF), the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), and industry partners.