T-Cell Lymphoma Dream Team - Stand Up To Cancer

Dream Teams

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SU2C Meg Vosburg T-cell Lymphoma Dream Team:
Tailoring CAR-based Immunotherapy Strategies
to T-cell Lymphoma

Grant Term: March 2019–August 2022

The goal of this team is to develop an effective treatment for T-cell lymphoma, a rare cancer of the blood and immune system for which few therapeutic options currently exist. The team is using powerful new immunotherapy approaches to both destroy T cells that have become malignant and prepare patients, when indicated, for successful stem cell transplants to contain or cure the cancer. By conducting clinical trials, the team hopes to create durable responses with therapies that can be applied to a wide variety of T-cell lymphoma malignancies.


Cancer immunotherapy—enabling the body’s immune system to detect and destroy cancer cells—has had a tremendous impact on a wide range of cancers, including B-cell lymphomas. However, it has not yet been effective in those lymphomas that originate primarily from T cells. The scientific challenge is in finding a therapy that can attack the cancerous T cells while leaving normal cells intact, since T cells are essential to the body’s immune system.

The SU2C Meg Vosburg T-cell Lymphoma Dream Team is testing engineered cells that carry molecules known as chimeric antigen receptors, or CARs, which can lock onto proteins on the surface of cancerous T cells and destroy them. Finding the best combination of CARs and engineered cell types is a key goal of the Dream Team. In addition, the team is working to modify the CAR-carrying cells so that they are not hindered by immune cells. This will help reduce the cancer and prepare patients for potential stem cell transplants to contain or cure the cancer. CAR therapy is usually custom-built for each patient. The team is trying to find a way to develop CAR cells on an “off-the-shelf” basis so the therapy will be more available to patients and less expensive.

This team is named in honor of Mary Margaret (Meg) Moretti Vosburg, a lifelong learner, educator and humanitarian, who died on May 26, 2018, after a hard-fought battle with lymphoma at the age of 51.


The top scientists and researchers on the SU2C Meg Vosburg T-cell Lymphoma Dream Team come from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines, which leads them to great insights upon collaboration. Learn more about the SU2C Meg Vosburg T-cell Lymphoma Dream Team.

Dream Team Members

Helen Heslop, MD, DSc
Baylor College of Medicine

Gianpietro Dotti, MD
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Bayard L. Powell, MD
Wake Forest University Health Sciences
Principal Investigator

Katy Rezvani, MD, PhD
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (MDACC)
Principal Investigator

Gustavo Ayala, MD
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

Bambi Grilley, RPh, RAC, CIP, CCRC, CCRP
Baylor College of Medicine

Ruth Sorelle, MPH
Baylor College of Medicine

Patty Spears
UNC Lineberger Patient Research Advocacy Group

“We’re exploiting the potential of the immune system to cure T-cell lymphoma by genetically modifying immune system cells, called T cells, so they have new receptors that will allow them to recognize the lymphoma cells and kill them. And we’re evaluating several different targets and several different sorts of immune effector cells. It’s a modular sort of system where we can hopefully combine the best from each different approach to produce a therapy that will improve outcomes in this patient population.”

Helen Heslop, MD
Baylor College of Medicine


Stand Up To Cancer’s research projects are designed to foster collaborative, swift translational research. The hallmarks of these efforts include rigorous application and selection procedures, sufficient funding to allow scientists to focus on the objectives of the grant, and reviews by senior scientists every six months. These reviews help the investigators capitalize on the latest findings, address potential roadblocks, and collaboratively evolve as the science requires. For the SU2C Meg Vosburg T-cell Lymphoma Dream Team, please click on the link below to see summaries of their research results so far.



This team started its work in January 2019. Links to publications will be posted when they are available.

Clinical Trials Referrals

Cancer clinical trials allow researchers to study innovative and potentially life-saving new treatments. The goal is to find treatments that are better than what’s currently available; in fact, the therapies offered to today’s cancer patients were almost all studied and made possible by people participating in clinical trials. But many cancer clinical trials aren’t completed because not enough people take part.

At StandUpToCancer.org/ClinicalTrials, you’ll find clinical trial information, answers to common questions, and a free clinical trial finder tool.



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