RetinaLink first posted Szilárd Kiss, MD, Weill Cornell Medical College and New York Presbyterian Hospital, work in collaboration with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) and Atara Biotherapeutics to harvest the power of the immune system to treat CMV retinitis on September 11, 2015. After reading the impactful article published in the New York Times on Sunday, July 31, 2016, http://nyti.ms/2asSoRV, I contacted Dr. Kiss to seek his permission to post his clinical study and collaboration with MSKCC again since there are parallels with Dr. Kiss’ work and what the NYT reported.
MSKCC is known globally for their cutting edge cancer research and world-renowned treatment of cancer patients. Having developed T-cell therapies for patients with cancer, Dr. Kiss and his collaborators are now employing this technology specifically for the treatment of ocular complications of CMV infections, even in patients without cancer.
Dr. Kiss first presented a snapshot of his collaborative research at the 39th Annual Nantucket Retina meeting in July 2015. CMV retinitis is a potentially blinding complication that affects immunocompromised patients who are unable to generate a T-cell response against the virus. At the Nantucket Retina meeting, Dr. Kiss described several immunocompromised patients (secondary to HIV and solid organ transplantation) whose CMV retinitis was resistant to standard therapies. The patients received multiple infusions of third-party donor-derived CMV specific T-cells. These T-cells alone led to long-term sustained resolution of the CMV retinitis in nearly a half a dozen patients treated thus far. One of the first patients treated is now out over 2 years from his last T-cell infusion and remains CMV retinitis free.
The initial success at Weill Cornell and MSKCC with this novel T-cell approach to the treatment of CMV retinitis has prompted a prospective multi-center clinical trial.
If you are interested in this clinical study or have patients that would be potential candidates, please e-mail Dr. Szilárd Kiss at firstname.lastname@example.org.