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Emerging evidences show immunotherapy by enhancing our own immune system has become an attractive approach for
cancer treatment due to the rapid drug resistance of chemotherapy. Fusion cytokines derived from GM-CSF and common
γ-chain interleukins have potent gain-of-function properties to alter host immune response. Recently, we have generated a
newly bioengineered fusokine GIFT4 that is derived from GM-CSF and IL-4, and tested the bioactivity of GIFT4 as a potential
immunotherapeutic agent against caner. We observed that GIFT4 directly elicits anti-tumor adaptive B-cell immune response
and consequent T cell immunity in vitro and in vivo. Murine GIFT4 expression suppresses melanoma tumor growth in
immunologically intact mouse and administration of GIFT4 protein inhibits murine melanoma growth in vivo. GIFT4-B cell
primed cytotoxic T cells from melanoma patients specifically kill human melanoma cells in vitro and in immune deficient NSG
mice. Thus, GIFT4 defines a novel engineered cytokine that mediates endogenous expansion of B-cells with potent anti-tumor
effector function. We propose that GIFT4 protein could serve as a novel immunotherapeutic agent and defines a previously
unrecognized potential of B-cells for personalized cancer cell immunotherapy. We expect that GIFT4 as an anti-melanoma
agent will provide a novel strategy and opens a new avenue for human B cell-based immunotherapy against melanoma. We
propose that GIFT4-B cells could serve as a potent immunotherapeutic agent and define a previously unrecognized potential
of B-cells for personalized cancer cell immunotherapy.
Deng received his PhD from Tel Aviv University School of Medicine in Israel in 2005. He completed his postdoc training in Massachusetts General Hospital Harvard Medical School and Emory University. He worked as a Research Associate in Stanford University School of Medicine. In 2011, Dr. Deng became an Instructor of Hematology and Medical Oncology in Winship Cancer Institute at Emory University. He has authored a number of peer-reviewed publications in the elite journals such as Cancer Research, Circulation, and Nature Immunology.