Successful hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) requires vacating recipient hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) niches in the bone marrow to permit donor HSC engraftment that can provide life-long hematopoietic and immune function. Currently, HSCT in SCID relies on DNA damaging chemotherapy to eliminate recipient HSC and achieve niche clearance. We have pursued a non-toxic approach to target and deplete HSC using a humanized monoclonal antibody, JSP191, that binds human CD117 (c-Kit). We previously showed the safety and successful HSC engraftment in a Phase 1 trial of the first 6 patients with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), who underwent a second transplant because of HSC engraftment failure and poor immunity after their first transplantation. In these re-transplant patients even a low level of stringently measured myeloid chimerism resulted in significant and sustained generation of naive T cells and clinical improvement. Based on these results, the study of JSP191 (NCT#02963064)has opened a cohort of newly diagnosed infants with SCID. Here we report data from the first patient in this cohort, a SCIDX1 patient who received a primary HSCT with haploidentical CD34+ cells after conditioning with JSP 191. The patient had a c.270-15A>G variant in the IL2RG gene, which is predicted to cause a null phenotype. Besides a T- B+ NK- phenotype typical of SCIDX1 including dysfunctional B cells, the patient had anemia and intermittent neutropenia and thrombocytopenia. Despite evidence of maternal T cell engraftment, the patient had no clinical graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). The patient was initially enrolled in a trial of lentiviral gene therapy, but harvested bone marrow cells died in vitro during transduction and culture. The patient also mobilized poorly with G-CSF/Plerixafor. Further investigation revealed heterozygosity for loss-of-function mutations in two genes involved in DNA repair, BRCA1 and RAD51; Diepoxybutane (DEB) breakage study showed greater than normal pathologic chromosomal breaks, but less than that seen in Fanconi anemia. Because of concern for possible hypersensitivity to alkylating agent-based conditioning, the patient was referred for transplant with JSP191 conditioning. The patient received a CD34+ peripheral blood HSCT from his father after conditioning with 0.3 mg/kg of JSP 191 antibody intravenously over an hour on Day -8 and rATG (Thymoglobulin) on Day -5, -4, -3 and -2 (3.5 mg/kg total) to prevent rejection by the maternal T cells. The cryopreserved donor CD34+ cells were administered after sufficient clearance of the JSP191 serum level. The antibody infusion was well tolerated without toxicity, and the post-transplant course was uneventful without acute toxicities or GVHD. As a surrogate marker for HSC engraftment, CD15+ myeloid cells from peripheral blood were stringently sorted by flow cytometry and donor levels were quantified by short-tandem repeat (STR) analysis. Progressive levels of myeloid engraftment were observed beginning at Week 4. The level of donor chimerism at 12 weeks was 8% in the sorted CD15+ blood cells, and a marrow aspirate showed 25% donor CD34+ cells. By 3 months pre-existing abnormal CD19-CD20+ host B lymphocytes were significantly reduced, and CD19+ donor-derived B lymphocytes were emerging. At 2 months, CD4+ recent thymic emigrant and naïve T lymphocytes were observed, and by 3 months, overall T and NK lymphocyte numbers were 390/uL and 117/uL, respectively. Normal blastogenic responses to the T cell mitogen PHA were observed at 3 months. These first-in-class results provide proof of concept of the safety and efficacy of the use of JSP191 antibody to clear host marrow niche space to enable sufficient donor HSC engraftment and immune reconstitution as primary therapy of SCID. Non-genotoxic conditioning with JSP191 may replace conventional conditioning for newly diagnosed infants with SCID, thereby avoiding toxicities of chemotherapy.
Kohn:Allogene Therapeutics: Consultancy, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Orchard Therapeutics: Consultancy, Patents & Royalties, Research Funding. De Oliveira:Orchard Therapeutics: Research Funding; bluebird bio, Inc.: Research Funding. Czechowicz:Rocket Pharmaceuticals, Inc.: Research Funding. Brown:Merck: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Ansun: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Cidara: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Allogene: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Cellerant Therapeutics: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees. Shizuru:Jasper Therapeutics, Inc: Current equity holder in private company, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees.
Asterisk with author names denotes non-ASH members.