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CARISMA Therapeutics Establishes Collaboration with Leading Cell Therapy Expert to Explore and Develop Allogeneic CAR-Macrophages

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

CARISMA Therapeutics Inc., a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering and developing innovative immunotherapies, announced it has established a multi-year scientific collaboration with Bruce Blazar, MD, Regents Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Blood and Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapy at the University of Minnesota to investigate and develop allogeneic macrophage therapies.

Allogeneic macrophage therapies may prove successful in providing a solution forged in cell therapy to a broader population of patients, further extending the potential benefits of CARISMA's CAR-Macrophage (CAR-M) platform beyond oncology and into other disease states with unmet clinical needs.  

"The collaboration with Dr. Blazar marks the initiation of the development of allogeneic, universal donor derived monocyte and macrophage cell therapies at CARISMA," said Michael Klichinsky, PharmD, PhD, Scientific Co-Founder and Senior Vice President of Research at CARISMA Therapeutics.  "The focus of this multi-year collaboration will be optimizing and developing iPSC derived allogeneic chimeric antigen receptor macrophages, further expanding the potential of macrophage-based cell therapy for cancer and other diseases."

The announcement follows the recent dosing of the first patient in CARISMA's Phase 1 multi-center clinical trial for CT-0508, a human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) targeted CAR-M. It is the first time CAR-engineered macrophages are being studied in humans.  

"For more than 35 years, I have focused on transplantation immunobiology in my lab in order to develop new therapies that may improve patient health," said Dr. Blazar. "I look forward to working with the company to develop allogeneic CAR-Ms to help patients with hard-to-treat cancers and other severe diseases."

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