Research

Our Strategic Focus

CITN prioritizes our research by selecting novel agents with proven immunologic or physiologic function. We conduct small (early phase), novel studies of these high-priority agents in patients with cancer that would lead to larger phase trials, ultimately resulting in FDA approval.

Given our limited funding and the urgency of developing new cancer immunotherapies, CITN is strategic in our choice of agents selected for early phase testing. We prioritize agents that

  • Have proven biologic activity
  • Are designed to stimulate T cells to ignite the body’s natural immunity
  • Have potential to treat rare cancers and underserved populations
  • Are hard to access outside of our network and partnerships
  • Can be tested in multiple settings
  • Provide information on immunology that can help inform trial design
  • Can be manufactured at scale by experienced organizations
  • Are not being researched by the pharmaceutical industry

Immunotherapy Clinical Trials

Adults With Cancer

CITN has initiated immunotherapy clinical trials across North America for patients with a variety of cancers:

  • Fallopian Tube Carcinoma
  • Gynecologic Cancers
  • Head and Neck (Oral) Cancers
  • Kidney (Renal)
  • Lung Cancer
  • Melanoma
  • Merkel Cell Cancer (Skin Cancer)
  • Mycosis Fungoides (Skin Cancer)
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Primary Peritoneal Cancer (Gynecologic)
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Renal Cell Carcinoma (Kidney)
  • Sézary Syndrome (Skin Cancer)
  • Skin Cancers
  • Urothelial Cancer

Adults With HIV & Cancer

CITN has pioneered clinical research protocols to include HIV-positive patients with cancer. In partnership with Dr. Thomas S. Uldrick, Deputy Head of Global Oncology at Fred Hutch, we are spearheading an international trial for these patients and have begun changing standards of care for this emerging population.

  • Kaposi Sarcoma

Children & Teens With Cancer

In 2017, CITN was awarded a grant to develop immunotherapy trials for children and teens with cancer at sites across North America. Under the direction of Dr. Crystal Mackall of Stanford University, the Pediatric CITN (PedCITN) includes:

  • Baylor College of Medicine
  • British Columbia Children’s Hospital
  • Children’s Hospital Colorado
  • Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
  • Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)
  • National Cancer Institute 
  • Seattle Children’s Hospital
  • Stanford University
  • Toronto Hospital for Sick Children
  • University of Wisconsin

PedCITN researchers specialize in a variety of childhood cancers including brain tumors, leukemia, hematology cancers, neuroblastoma, rare tumors, etc.

Find out More About Clinical Trials

Priority Agents Available

CITN relies on our membership of leading cancer immunologists to access the most promising immunotherapeutic agents known to date. We then collaborate with our industry and philanthropic partners to develop early-stage trials that provide the quickest route from proof of concept to patient benefit and regulatory approval.

Agents Available in the CITN

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T cell growth factors

  • IL-15 (effector T cells) [#1] √
  • IL-7 (naïve T cells) [#5] √
  • IL-21 (T cells & NK)

 

T cell stimulators

  • 4-1-BB (CD137) [#8]
  • Anti-GITR [#12]
  • Anti-OX40 [#16]

 

Vaccine adjuvants with immunotherapeutic potential

  • IL-12 [#3]
  • CpG [#6}
  • MPL [#14]
  • Poly I:C [#15]
  • Resiquimod [#18]

 

Inhibitors of cancer cell & immune cell suppression

  • IDO inhibitor [#7] √
  • Anti-TGF-b [#9]
  • Anti-IL10 & Anti-IL10R [#10]

Inhibitors of T cell checkpoint blockade

  • Anti-PD1 & PD1Ligand [#2] √
  • Anti–B7-H4 [#17]
  • Anti–LAG-3 [#19]
  • LIGHT [#20]

 

Vaccine adjuvants with immunotherapeutic potential

  • IL-12 [#3]
  • CpG [#6} √
  • MPL [#14] √
  • Poly I:C [#15] √
  • Resiquimod [#18]

 

Dendritic cell growth factors to increase body burden to DC

  • Flt3L [#11] √

 

Dendritic cell activators

  • Anti-CD40 & CD40L [#4] √