CD19-specific CAR T Cells that Express a PD-1/CD28 Chimeric Switch-Receptor are Effective in Patients with PD-L1-positive B-Cell Lymphoma.

Journal Article (Clinical Trial;Journal Article)


CD19-specific chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy is effective against refractory or relapsed (R/R) B-cell lymphoma, but the efficacy is hindered by the existence of PD-1/PD-L1 pathway.

Patients and methods

Here, we generated a novel anti-CD19 CAR-expressing PD-1/CD28 chimeric switch-receptor (CD19-PD-1/CD28-CAR). We then conducted a phase Ib study to evaluate safety and efficacy of CD19-PD-1/CD28-CAR T cells in the treatment of PD-L1+ B-cell lymphoma.


We found that CD19-PD-1/CD28-CAR T cells had superior T-cell proliferation, cytokine production, and sequentially capability of killing PD-L1+ B-cell lymphoma cells in vitro and in vivo relative to the prototype, CD19-CAR T cells. Among 17 adult patients with R/R lymphoma who received the CAR T therapy, 10 patients had objective response (58.8%), including seven patients with complete remission (41.2%). At a median follow-up 15 months, median overall survival for all patients was not reached. Remarkably, no severe neurologic toxicity or cytokine release syndrome was observed.


This first-in-human study demonstrates the tolerability, safety, and encouraging efficacy of CD19-PD-1/CD28-CART in PD-L1+ large B-cell lymphoma.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Liu, H; Lei, W; Zhang, C; Yang, C; Wei, J; Guo, Q; Guo, X; Chen, Z; Lu, Y; Young, KH; Lu, Z; Qian, W

Published Date

  • January 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 27 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 473 - 484

PubMed ID

  • 33028589

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1557-3265

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1078-0432

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1158/1078-0432.ccr-20-1457


  • eng