Successful adoptive T-cell immunotherapy of solid tumors will require improved expansion and cytotoxicity of tumor-directed T cells within tumors. Providing recombinant or transgenic cytokines may produce the desired benefi ts but is associated with significant toxicities, constraining clinical use. To circumvent this limitation, we constructed a constitutively signaling cytokine receptor, C7R, which potently triggers the IL7 signaling axis but is unresponsive to extracellular cytokine. This strategy augments modifi ed T-cell function following antigen exposure, but avoids stimulating bystander lymphocytes. Coexpressing the C7R with a tumor-directed chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) increased T-cell proliferation, survival, and antitumor activity during repeated exposure to tumor cells, without T-cell dysfunction or autonomous T-cell growth. Furthermore, C7Rcoexpressing CAR T cells were active against metastatic neuroblastoma and orthotopic glioblastoma xenograft models even at cell doses that had been ineffective without C7R support. C7R may thus be able to enhance antigen-specifi c T-cell therapies against cancer. SIGnIFICAnCE: The constitutively signaling C7R system developed here delivers potent IL7 stimulation to CAR T cells, increasing their persistence and antitumor activity against multiple preclinical tumor models, supporting its clinical development.
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