Dr. Michael Har-Noy, founder and CEO of Immunovative Therapies Ltd., describes the “Mirror EffectTM” as an immune mechanism that solves the problem of separating the curative graft versus tumor (GVT) effect of bone marrow transplant (BMT) procedures from the lethal graft versus host disease (GVHD) complication.
Dr. Michael Har-Noy says the solution was to create a T-cell infusion that would simulate the immune reactions precipitated by the transplanted donor cells but would instead be controlled by the patient’s own immune system. This mechanism, called the Mirror EffectTM, can potentially reproduce the curative effect of a BMT without life-threatening toxicity.
The Mirror EffectTM mechanism reverses the closely related GVT and GVHD effects that stem from the infused graft. This effect originates from the host instead of from transplanted cells, thereby creating a host versus tumor (HVT) response linked to the non-toxic host versus graft (HVG) rejection.
To precipitate the Mirror EffectTM, T-cells from a normal donor are given to a cancer patient; these cells then stimulate the patient’s own immune system to attack the tumor (HVT effect) and create an inflammatory environment which neutralizes the tumor immunoavoidance mechanisms.
Dr. Michael Har-Noy says that because the HVT response must be coupled to a HVG rejection, the patient must have an intact immune system that can respond to and reject the donor T-cells. Also, because graft rejection (HVG) is the desired effect, the donor cells should be mismatched to the patient. This is a critical improvement over allogeneic BMT procedures, where only one in three recipient patients has a suitable related donor.
The Mirror EffectTM thus involves injection of mismatched donor cells into a cancer patient that has not received any pretreatment, so that these infused cells are rejected by the patient’s immune response. This HVG effect is the “mirror” of the lethal GVHD but is non-toxic. The HVG rejection initiates host-mediated tumor lysis (HVT), which is the “mirror” of the GVT effect. The Mirror EffectTM imitates the curative GVT effect of BMT and simultaneously avoids the catastrophic toxicity of GVHD.
Dr. Michael Har-Noy feels that the “Mirror EffectTM” may spawn an entire new field of cancer treatment.