Welcome!

News Feed Item

MD Anderson Announces Collaboration With Johnson & Johnson Innovation On Cancer Immunotherapy

HOUSTON, Jan. 21, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center  will collaborate with Johnson & Johnson Innovation, LLC, and its affiliate Janssen Biotech, Inc., to develop immunology-based cancer treatments through the MD Anderson Moon Shots Program immunotherapy platform.

"The strengths of both organizations in the rapidly growing field of cancer immunotherapy can exploit opportunities to develop more effective treatments for cancer patients," said Jim Allison, Ph.D., chair of Immunology and executive director of the immunotherapy platform.  "We look forward to collaborating with Johnson & Johnson Innovation."

MD Anderson's Moon Shots Program is an ambitious effort to dramatically reduce cancer deaths, starting with six moon shots that target eight cancers and are backed by several platforms - infrastructure, technology or expertise - that support research efforts.

The 3-year translational research agreement brings together the scientific and clinical capabilities of MD Anderson and Johnson & Johnson Innovation and Janssen Biotech, Inc., to develop rational combination therapies and personalized medicine approaches as well as to identify new treatment opportunities.

The collaboration with Johnson & Johnson Innovation is the second such arrangement made through the moon shots immunotherapy platform. Only a few companies will be selected to become partners to the platform.

"Our new collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotech companies through our immunotherapy platform are different from traditional agreements, because they allow both parties to work on any project they deem appropriate without additional budgets," said Ferran Prat, Ph.D., J.D., MD Anderson's vice president of strategic industry ventures.

"We provide our pharma and biotech collaborators access to state-of-the-art facilities, novel research protocols for clinical trials open to our large and diverse patient population, and an opportunity to work with leaders in the field of immunotherapy," Prat said.

Prat said this collaboration will explore oncology focus areas of interest to Janssen Biotech, Inc.

Allison's basic science research on T cell biology led to an entirely new method of treating cancer called immune checkpoint blockade, which blocks receptors on the surface of T cells that tumors use to turn off immune attack.

Allison created an antibody to one such checkpoint, called CTLA-4, and worked in its development as the drug ipilimumab (Yervoy), the first drug of its kind and also the first to be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for late-stage melanoma. More than 20 percent of melanoma patients given the drug develop long-lasting remissions for five years and longer.

In December, the journal Science designated cancer immunotherapy as its 2013 Breakthrough of the Year, noting Allison's leadership in the field, The Economist named Allison winner of its 2013 Innovations Award for Biosciences and he received a $3 million Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences from the foundation of the same name launched last year by internet and social media entrepreneurs. 

MD Anderson's immunotherapy platform has enhanced and increased the institution's capabilities in expertise, technology and techniques since Allison's arrival in November of 2012.

Patrick Hwu, M.D., chair of Melanoma Medical Oncology is co-director of the platform.  Translational physician-scientist Padmanee Sharma M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of Genitourinary Medical Oncology, is scientific director.

MD Anderson has invested $40 million in the platform, including philanthropic funds and a $10 million Established Investigator grant from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas to recruit Allison from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York. Allison holds MD Anderson's Vivian L. Smith Distinguished Chair in Immunology.

Since approval of ipilimumab in 2011, additional immune checkpoint receptors and drugs to target them have been discovered and are in clinical trials. At MD Anderson, clinical trials of ipilimumab and other agents target melanoma, lymphoma, lung, breast, gastric and prostate cancers, with more planned.

MD Anderson researchers also are working on a variety of ways to enhance T cell attack on cancer cells. For example, one method involves harvesting a patient's own cancer-targeting T cells, expanding their number in the lab, then reinfusing them in the patient.  Another involves customizing a patient's T cells via gene transfer to more efficiently attack tumors and then giving them back to patients.  Both methods are in clinical trials.

Therapeutic vaccine development also is under way for melanoma, lymphoma and breast cancer.

About MD Anderson

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston ranks as one of the world's most respected centers focused on cancer patient care, research, education and prevention. MD Anderson is one of only 41 comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). For ten of the past 12 years, including 2013, MD Anderson has ranked No. 1 in cancer care in "Best Hospitals," a survey published annually in U.S. News & World Report. MD Anderson receives a cancer center support grant from the NCI of the National Institutes of Health (P30 CA016672).

Get MD Anderson News Via RSS  Follow MD Anderson News on Twitter

This news release was issued on behalf of Newswise(TM). For more information, visit http://www.newswise.com.

SOURCE The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
"We're here to tell the world about our cloud-scale infrastructure that we have at Juniper combined with the world-class security that we put into the cloud," explained Lisa Guess, VP of Systems Engineering at Juniper Networks, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Enterprise architects are increasingly adopting multi-cloud strategies as they seek to utilize existing data center assets, leverage the advantages of cloud computing and avoid cloud vendor lock-in. This requires a globally aware traffic management strategy that can monitor infrastructure health across data centers and end-user experience globally, while responding to control changes and system specification at the speed of today’s DevOps teams. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Josh Gray, Chie...
"We're a cybersecurity firm that specializes in engineering security solutions both at the software and hardware level. Security cannot be an after-the-fact afterthought, which is what it's become," stated Richard Blech, Chief Executive Officer at Secure Channels, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Mike Johnston, an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io, discussed how to use Kubernetes to set up a SaaS infrastructure for your business. Mike Johnston is an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io with over 12 years of experience designing, deploying, and maintaining server and workstation infrastructure at all scales. He has experience with brick and mortar data centers as well as cloud providers like Digital Ocean, Amazon Web Services, and Rackspace. H...
Consumers increasingly expect their electronic "things" to be connected to smart phones, tablets and the Internet. When that thing happens to be a medical device, the risks and benefits of connectivity must be carefully weighed. Once the decision is made that connecting the device is beneficial, medical device manufacturers must design their products to maintain patient safety and prevent compromised personal health information in the face of cybersecurity threats. In his session at @ThingsExpo...
All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the work...
Detecting internal user threats in the Big Data eco-system is challenging and cumbersome. Many organizations monitor internal usage of the Big Data eco-system using a set of alerts. This is not a scalable process given the increase in the number of alerts with the accelerating growth in data volume and user base. Organizations are increasingly leveraging machine learning to monitor only those data elements that are sensitive and critical, autonomously establish monitoring policies, and to detect...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Grape Up will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company specializing in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the U.S. and Europe, Grape Up works with a variety of customers from emergi...
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Massive Networks will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Massive Networks mission is simple. To help your business operate seamlessly with fast, reliable, and secure internet and network solutions. Improve your customer's experience with outstanding connections to your cloud.
DevOps is under attack because developers don’t want to mess with infrastructure. They will happily own their code into production, but want to use platforms instead of raw automation. That’s changing the landscape that we understand as DevOps with both architecture concepts (CloudNative) and process redefinition (SRE). Rob Hirschfeld’s recent work in Kubernetes operations has led to the conclusion that containers and related platforms have changed the way we should be thinking about DevOps and...
Everything run by electricity will eventually be connected to the Internet. Get ahead of the Internet of Things revolution and join Akvelon expert and IoT industry leader, Sergey Grebnov, in his session at @ThingsExpo, for an educational dive into the world of managing your home, workplace and all the devices they contain with the power of machine-based AI and intelligent Bot services for a completely streamlined experience.
Because IoT devices are deployed in mission-critical environments more than ever before, it’s increasingly imperative they be truly smart. IoT sensors simply stockpiling data isn’t useful. IoT must be artificially and naturally intelligent in order to provide more value In his session at @ThingsExpo, John Crupi, Vice President and Engineering System Architect at Greenwave Systems, will discuss how IoT artificial intelligence (AI) can be carried out via edge analytics and machine learning techn...
FinTechs use the cloud to operate at the speed and scale of digital financial activity, but are often hindered by the complexity of managing security and compliance in the cloud. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sesh Murthy, co-founder and CTO of Cloud Raxak, showed how proactive and automated cloud security enables FinTechs to leverage the cloud to achieve their business goals. Through business-driven cloud security, FinTechs can speed time-to-market, diminish risk and costs, maintain continu...
"Cloud computing is certainly changing how people consume storage, how they use it, and what they use it for. It's also making people rethink how they architect their environment," stated Brad Winett, Senior Technologist for DDN Storage, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.