Adoptive transfer of T cells engineered to express synthetic antigen-specific T cell receptors (TCRs) has provocative therapeutic applications for treating cancer. However, expressing these synthetic TCRs in a CD4+ T cell line is a challenge. The CD4+ Jurkat T cell line expresses endogenous TCRs that compete for space, accessory proteins, and proliferative signaling, and there is the potential for mixed dimer formation between the α and β chains of the endogenous receptor and that of the synthetic cancer-specific TCRs. To prevent hybridization between the receptors and to ensure the binding affinity measured with flow cytometry analysis is between the tetramer and the TCR construct, a CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing pipeline was developed. The guide RNAs (gRNAs) within the complex were designed to target the constant region of the α and β chains, as they are conserved between TCR clonotypes. To minimize further interference and confer cytotoxic capabilities, gRNAs were designed to target the CD4 coreceptor, and the CD8 coreceptor was delivered in a mammalian expression vector. Further, Golden Gate cloning methods were validated in integrating the gRNAs into a CRISPR-compatible mammalian expression vector. These constructs were transfected via electroporation into CD4+ Jurkat T cells to create a CD8+ knockout TCR Jurkat cell line for broadly applicable uses in T cell immunotherapies.
- Developing a CRISPR-Mediated Knockout TCR Human T Cell Line for Use in Cloning Antigen-Specific T Cell Receptors
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- Masters Thesis Biology 2020