Nicholas Chandler, Structural Biology division

Nicholas Chandler, Structural Biology division

Start Time: 
Wed, 16/12/2020 - 1:00pm
End Time: 
Wed, 16/12/2020 - 2:00pm
Nicholas Chandler
PhD Student - Call Laboratory, Structural Biology division - New Medicines & Advanced Technologies Theme
(this is a PhD completion seminar)

A New Set of Wheels: Using custom-designed protein structures to improve CAR-T cell therapies

WEHI Wednesday Seminar hosted by Associate Professor Matthew Call

Join via TEAMS

Includes Q&A session

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy has revolutionized the treatment of B cell malignancies by redirecting patient T cells to destroy cancer cells using engineered receptors. However, CAR therapies carry significant risk of inducing cytokine release syndrome (CRS), a potentially deadly toxicity caused by excessive release of inflammatory cytokines. Furthermore, CAR T cells targeting antigens outside of the B cell compartment have achieved limited success due to insufficient anti-tumour activity. The ability to minimize toxicity without compromising efficacy is therefore vital to the continued improvement and expanded therapeutic utility of CAR therapies.

During his PhD, Nick has investigated the structural determinants of CAR potency and toxicity with the aim of predictably modulating CAR activity. Nick will present the development of a novel protein engineering strategy involving the characterisation of de novo designed transmembrane domains and testing of their functionality in the context of HER2-specific CARs.

Nick is a PhD student in the Call Laboratory within the WEHI Structural Biology Division. He completed his undergraduate Science degree at the University of Melbourne and then Honours at WEHI with the Call Laboratory studying structural mechanisms of T cell receptor activation. He began his PhD in 2017 and has maintained an active involvement in WEHI as a WESA and Reconciliation Committee member as well as co-captaining the illustrious WEHI Wombats AFL team.