Glypican 3-specific Chimeric Antigen Receptor Expressed in T Cells for Patients With Pediatric Solid Tumors (GAP)

2016-10-14 02:08:22 | BioPortfolio


This study enrolls patients who have a type of cancer with GPC3-positive solid tumors. The cancer has come back, has not gone away after standard treatment or the patient cannot receive standard treatment. This research study uses special immune system cells called GAP T cells, a new experimental treatment.

The body has different ways of fighting infection and disease. No single way seems perfect for fighting cancers. This research study combines two different ways of fighting cancer: antibodies and T cells. Antibodies are types of proteins that protect the body from infectious diseases and possibly cancer. T cells, also called T lymphocytes, are special infection-fighting blood cells that can kill other cells, including cells infected with viruses and tumor cells. Both antibodies and T cells have been used to treat patients with cancers. They have shown promise, but have not been strong enough to cure most patients.

Investigators have found from previous research that they can put a new gene into T cells that will make them recognize cancer cells and kill them. In preclinical studies, the investigators made several genes called a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR), from an antibody called GC33 that recognizes glypican-3, a proteoglycan found on solid tumors (GPC3-CAR). This study will test T cells genetically engineered with a GPC3-CAR (GAP T cells) in patients with GPC3-positive solid tumors.

The GAP T cells are an investigational product not approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

The purpose of this study is to find the biggest dose of GAP T cells that is safe, to see how long they last in the body, to learn what the side effects are and to see if the GAP T cells will help people with GPC3-positive solid tumors.


Approximately 14 subjects will participate in the treatment part of this study.

180 mL of blood is collected from patients to grow The T cells are grown and a retrovirus (a special virus that can insert the GPC3 CAR gene into the T cells) is used to genetically engineer them. After the CAR gene was put into the T cells, the investigators make sure that they are able to kill GPC-3 positive solid tumor cells in the laboratory.


Several studies suggest that the infused T cells need room to be able to proliferate and accomplish their functions and that this may not happen if there are too many other T cells in circulation. Because of that, participants will receive treatment with cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan) and fludarabine for 3 days before receiving the T-cell infusion. These drugs will decrease the numbers of the participants' own T cells before the investigators infuse the GAP T CELLS.


After making these cells, they will be frozen. If the patient agrees to participate in this study, at the time the patient is scheduled to be treated, the cells will be thawed and injected into the patient over 5 to 10 minutes. The participant will receive the GAP T CELLS 24 to 72 hours after completing the chemotherapy. The participant may be pretreated with Tylenol (acetaminophen) and Benadryl (diphenhydramine). Tylenol and Benadryl are given to prevent a possible allergic reaction to the T cell administration.

This is a dose escalation study, which means that the investigators do not know the highest dose of GAP T cells that is safe. To find out, the investigators will give the cells to at least 2 participants at one dose level. If that is safe, the investigators will raise the dose given to the next group of participants. The dose each patient gets depends on how many participants get the agent before that patient and how they react. The investigator will tell each patient this information. This will help the participant think about possible harms and benefits. Since the treatment is experimental, what is likely to happen at any dose is not known.

All of the Treatments will be given by the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy at Texas Children's Hospital.

Medical tests before treatment:

- Physical exam and History

- Blood tests to measure blood cells, kidney and liver function.

- Pregnancy test (if the participant is a female who can get pregnant)

- If the participant is infected with the hepatitis B virus (HBV) the investigators will do a test to measure the levels of the virus

- Measurements of the participant's tumor by scans and the tumor marker alfa-fetoprotein (AFP), if the participant's tumor produces this protein.

Medical tests during and after treatment:

- Physical exams and History

- Blood tests to measure blood cells, kidney and liver function

- If the participant is infected with the hepatitis B virus (HBV) the investigators will repeat the test and monitor the levels of the virus

- Measurements of the participant's tumor by scans (6 - 8 weeks after the infusion) and AFP (if applicable at 1, 2, 4 and 6 weeks after the infusion).

- Tumor biopsy (optional)


The investigators will follow the participant during and after the injections. To learn more about the way the T cells are working in the participant's body, up to 60 mL (upto 12 teaspoons, no more than 3ml/kg/day) of blood will be taken from the participant before the chemotherapy, before the T-cell infusion, 1 to 4 hours after the infusion, 3 to 4 days after the infusion (this time point is optional ) at 1 week, 2 weeks, 4 weeks and 6 weeks after the injection, every 3 months for 1 year, every 6 months for 4 years and then every year for the next 10 years. Total participation time for this study will be 15 years.

During the time points listed above, if the T cells are found in the participant's blood at a certain amount an extra 5 mL of blood may need to be collected for additional testing.

The investigators will use this blood to look for the frequency and activity of the cells that the investigators have given; that is, to learn more about the way the T cells are working and how long they last in the body. The investigators will also use this blood to see if there are any long-term side effects of putting the new gene (chimeric antigen receptor, CAR) into the cells. In addition to the blood draws, because the participants have received cells that have had a new gene put in them, the participants will need to have long term follow up for 15 years so the investigators can see if there are any long-term side effects of the gene transfer.

Once a year, the participants will be asked to have their blood drawn and answer questions about their general health and medical condition. The investigators may ask the participants to report any recent hospitalizations, new medications, or the development of conditions or illness that were not present when the participants enrolled in the study and may request that physical exams and/or laboratory tests be performed if necessary.

In the event that a tumor biopsy is performed for clinical reasons the investigators will request permission to obtain excess sample to learn more about the effects of the treatment on the participant's disease.

In the event of death, the investigators will request permission to perform an autopsy to learn more about the effects of the treatment on the participant's disease and if there were any side effects from the cells with the new gene.

In addition, the investigators would like to ask for participant permission to obtain tumor biopsy for research purposes only. Associated risk with the biopsy will be discussed with each participant in detail in a procedure specific consent form. The investigators will test the sample to see if the GAP T cells can be found in the tumor and what effect they had on the tumor cells.

If participants develop a second abnormal cancer growth, significant blood or nervous system disorder during the trial, a biopsy sample of the tissue will be tested (if a sample can be obtained).

Study Design

Endpoint Classification: Safety Study, Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment, Masking: Open Label, Primary Purpose: Treatment


Solid Tumors


GAP T cells, Cytoxan, Fludara


Texas Children's Hospital
United States


Not yet recruiting


Baylor College of Medicine

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2016-10-14T02:08:22-0400

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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

A smooth, solid or cystic fibroepithelial (FIBROEPITHELIAL NEOPLASMS) tumor, usually found in the OVARIES but can also be found in the adnexal region and the KIDNEYS. It consists of a fibrous stroma with nests of epithelial cells that sometimes resemble the transitional cells lining the urinary bladder. Brenner tumors generally are benign and asymptomatic. Malignant Brenner tumors have been reported.

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A heterogenous group of disorders characterized by the abnormal increase of MAST CELLS in only the skin (MASTOCYTOSIS, CUTANEOUS), in extracutaneous tissues involving multiple organs (MASTOCYTOSIS, SYSTEMIC), or in solid tumors (MASTOCYTOMA).

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