Malignant brain tumors are often associated with a dismal prognosis, and despite advances in surgical technique, radiation and chemotherapy, few patients with glioblastoma remain alive three years after diagnosis. Dr. Curry’s efforts involve the conduct of translational research in immunotherapy for malignant brain tumors and in developing clinical trials involving immunotherapeutic and other biologic and cellular approaches.
Working closely with Glenn Dranoff, MD, at the Cancer Vaccine Center at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute there are ongoing efforts to implement a protocol for cytokine-based immunotherapy for brain tumors that combines autologous tumor cell vaccination with bystander cells expressing granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) as a stimulator of cellular and humoral anti-tumor immunity.
The Curry Lab is using treated patient serum to screen tumor cDNA libraries for antigenic targets and combining this with assays to detect helper and cytotoxic T-lymphocyte activity in patients with brain tumors.
Closely collaborating with the Molecular Neurosurgery Laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital in studying the antitumor immunity that is generated in mice by infection of brain tumors with oncolytic herpes simplex virus -1. The Curry Lab is conducting studies combining HSV-1 (G207) treatment of brain tumors with intratumoral injection of dendritic cells, as well as other adjuvants known to participate in bridging innate and adaptive immunity.
Our clinical trial is hoping to exploit the antitumor synergy between G207 (oncolytic HSV-1) and Temozolomide (an oral alkylating agent which has efficacy against malignant gliomas), the basis of which is chemotherapy-related cellular upregulation of DNA repair proteins that enhance viral replication.
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