RNA-Modified vs DNA-Modified CAR T Products

Michael Singer, MD, PhD, chief scientific officer, Cartesian Therapeutics, discussed the company’s RNA Armory technology.

“We're engineering multiple cell types, both autologous and allogenic for several different therapeutic areas. But the unifying concept is that we use RNA instead of DNA to improve the benefit-risk profile. The RNA lets us exert better temporal and spatial control over the cells.”

While most cell therapies in development modify DNA, Cartesian Therapeutics is focused on using their RNA Armory technology to create cell therapies for various autoimmune, oncologic, and respiratory indications.

The company recently announced data from their phase 1b/2a trial (NCT04146051) of Descartes-08, an mRNA-modified CAR T-cell therapy product, in myasthenia gravis (MG). Data showed improvements in the MG Foundation of America (MGFA) Clinical Classification and substantial improvement in MG Composite scale and the therapy was tolerated in all 3 patients dosed. Cartesian plans to enroll 12 to 15 more participants following the August announcement.

GeneTherapyLive spoke with Michael Singer, MD, PhD, chief scientific officer, Cartesian Therapeutics, to learn more about the advantages of mRNA-modified CAR T products over DNA-modified therapies and the company’s RNA Armory technology. He also discussed the positive data from the trial of Descartes-08.

REFERENCE
Cartesian Therapeutics announces clinical responses in first cohort of phase 1b/2a trial in myasthenia gravis. News release. August 24, 2021. https://www.cartesiantherapeutics.com/cartesian-therapeutics-announces-clinical-responses-in-first-cohort-of-phase-1b-2a-trial-in-myasthenia-gravis/