Adaptimmune’s affinity enhanced SPEAR T-cell therapeutic candidates are novel cancer immunotherapies that have been engineered to target and destroy cancer cells by strengthening a patient’s natural T-cell response. T-cells are a type of white blood cell that play a central role in a person’s immune response. Adaptimmune’s goal is to harness the power of the T-cell and, through its multiple therapeutic candidates, significantly impact cancer treatment and clinical outcomes of patients with solid and hematologic cancers. The CTS Dynabeads CD3/CD28 play a key role in the activation of Adaptimmune SPEAR T-cells during manufacture.

Dynabeads – a key reagent for autologous T-cell manufacture

CTS Dynabeads CD3/CD28 are magnetic beads used by Adaptimmune for ex vivo isolation, activation, and expansion of human T-cells. By combining anti-CD3 and anti-CD28 antibodies on the Dynabeads, the beads provide both the primary and secondary co-stimulatory signals that are required for activation and expansion of T-cells.

The SPEAR T-cell manufacturing process consists of:

  1. isolating T-cells from the blood of cancer patients;
  2. transferring affinity enhanced TCRs, which have been modified to recognize cancer cells, into the cells (SPEAR T-cells);
  3. activating and expanding the SPEAR T-cells; and,
  4. introducing the affinity enhanced cells back into the patient to enable the patient's immune system to respond and attack cancer.

Important steps of this manufacturing process include isolation of the T-cells from patient material and subsequent activation and expansion of the T-cells prior to re-infusion. CTS Dynabeads CD3/CD28 are integral to this process and key to the production of active, persistent T-cells.

“Dynabeads have unique properties compared to other means of activation and expansion, which we believe make them the optimal approach for manufacturing our affinity enhanced T-cell therapies. These include triggering the T-cells to expand in a natural and controlled manner to generate younger and healthier T-cells and leading to prolonged persistence of therapeutic cells in the blood. These and other attributes are requirements for successful manufacture of T-cell therapeutics.”
Gwen Binder, Chief Technology Officer, Adaptimmune

Adaptimmune has an exclusive license to this technology for its SPEAR T-cell therapies

In 2012 and 2013, Adaptimmune secured exclusive licenses and supply agreements from Life Technologies Corporation (acquired in 2014 by Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., NYSE: TMO) under certain intellectual property rights covering methods of expanding and activating T cells transduced with engineered T-cell receptors (TCR) in the fields of treating cancer, infectious diseases and autoimmune disease.

Commercial Development and Supply Agreement

In 2016, Adaptimmune signed a further agreement with Life Technologies Corporation. This new commercial development and supply 10-year agreement augments Adaptimmune’s exclusive license and supply relationship with Thermo Fisher for the Dynabeads CTS for use in the manufacture of Adaptimmune’s SPEAR T-cell therapies.

“Thermo Fisher Scientific’s market-leading cell therapy workflow solutions are enabling its customers to address the unique commercialization challenges of this market. Our collaboration with Adaptimmune demonstrates our sustained commitment to significantly advance the development and commercial use of this technology for treating solid tumors as well as other conditions that threaten human health.”
Oystein Aamellem, Director of Cellular Medicine, Thermo Fisher



CTS DynaMag



Electron micrograph shows Dynabeads binding directly to CD3 positive cells (T-cells)