7th ISI awards scientific papers on malaria and CAR-T Cell
One of the highlights of the 7th International Symposium on Immunobiologicals (ISI) was the awarding of scientific papers during the closing of the event on May 4. Three works were awarded by the scientific jury composed of an independent evaluation committee, with external members. Three prizes were awarded: Oswaldo Cruz, for the first place; Carlos Chagas, for the second place; and Alcides Godoy, for third place.
This year, the first place went to the work “Detection of Plasmodium spp. in asymptomatic blood donors at Brazilian blood centers by the Nat Plus HIV/HBV/HCV/MALARIA Bio-Manguinhos kit”; second place went to “Improvement CAR-T cell therapy with ultra-fast protocol and IL-15 membrane bound addition”; and third place went to “Immune Checkpoint Blockade via PD-L1 Potentiates More CD28-Based than 4-1BBased Anti-Carbonic Anhydrase IX Chimeric Antigen Receptor T Cells”.
In this edition, ISI received the submission of more than 180 posters, 90 of them selected by the scientific and technological committee, six of them presented orally in plenary, and 27 available in pitch format on the stage of the Arena. All 90 chosen had their space in the face-to-face exhibition in the digital totems shared, and virtually, through the application. In addition, the approved papers have DOI registration, being available through the institutional repository of Fiocruz (Arca) and in the annals of the event.
According to the creator of ISI and senior advisor of Bio-Manguinhos, Dr. Akira Homma, the works bring promising and innovative research scenarios. “It is encouraging to see the wealth of topics addressed through numerous works with innovative proposals and promising initial results. During these exhibitions, participants can present their work, exchange experiences, listen to feedback and suggestions on their findings, as well as increase the visibility of their research,” he says.
Check out the topics covered by the first three placed:
Oswaldo Cruz Award: Detection of Plasmodium spp. in asymptomatic blood donors at Brazilian blood centers by the Nat Plus HIV/HBV/HCV/MALARIA Bio-Manguinhos kit
The research elaborated by Beatriz Vasconcellos de Souza Barreto, was a pioneer when analyzing for the first time, the detections of Plasmodium spp in asymptomatic blood donors in the city of Rio de Janeiro (Hemorio) and Manaus (Hemoam) by the Brazilian Nat Plus kit, recently implanted in the Blood Centers.
The Nat Plus Kit began to be used in September 2022 in Rio de Janeiro, and in January 2023 in Manaus. In the period, three positive samples for Plasmodium spp were found in non-symptomatic patients, two of them in a non-endemic region.
The results demonstrated the relevance of the Nat Plus Kit in the context of public health, demonstrating its importance to ensure transfusion safety, especially in endemic areas. The screening of malaria in blood donors throughout the national territory will allow a better understanding of the epidemiological situation in Brazil.
Carlos Chagas Award: “Improvement CAR-T cell therapy with ultra-fast protocol and IL-15 membrane bound addition”
The work presented by Luiza de Macedo Abdo, proposed an ultra-fast protocol to reduce the time, cost and complexities of CAR-T Cell therapy. A non-viral vector called Sleeping Beauty (SB) or PiggyBac (PB) was used, which allows not to activate the cell before the insertion of the gene and, consequently, the non-mandatory expansion of these cells. The CAR-T Cell was inserted, and these cells were used to treat mice grafted with leukemia. This protocol is called the point-of-care (POC) approach.
According to the researcher, this proposal for CAR-T Cell therapy can be explored as an alternative with less cost, time and complexities, bringing benefits in the fight against the tumor in an animal model.
Alcides Godoy Award: Immune Checkpoint Blockade via PD-L1 Potentiates More CD28-Based than 4-1BBased Anti-Carbonic Anhydrase IX Chimeric Antigen Receptor T Cells
The study authored by Najla Santos Pacheco de Campos addressed the complete regression of clear renal cell carcinoma (ccRC), being obtained preclinically with CAR-T Cell anti-anhydrase IX (CAIX) G36, in doses equivalent to ≅108 CAR-T Cell/kg, renewing the potential of this target to treat ccRC and other tumors in hypoxia. Immune checkpoint (ICB) blockade has brought lasting clinical responses to ccRC in adjuvant and metastatic scenarios, making it an important pillar of treatment. It was observed that the CAR-T Cell anti-CAIX were able to induce about 80% decrease in the viability of ccRC cells in vitro, promoting a significant reduction in tumor volume and weight, preventing the induction of tumor metastases, offering new perspectives for the treatment of refractory CCRC and hypoxic tumors.
The prizes were named after three exponents of Brazilian science, Oswaldo Cruz, Carlos Chagas and Alcides Godoy. All the researchers worked at Fiocruz bringing numerous contributions to Brazilian public health. Learn more about them:
Oswaldo Cruz was a great researcher who worked as a Brazilian scientist, physician, bacteriologist, epidemiologist and sanitarian. He was the pioneer in the study of tropical diseases and experimental medicine in Brazil. He began his graduation in 1887, at the Faculty of Medicine of Rio de Janeiro. In 1896 he went to Paris and joined the Pasteur Institute as an intern. When he returned to Brazil in 1899, he worked to combat the outbreak of bubonic plague. From there, the creation of the National Serotherapy Institute began. During his work, he coordinated campaigns for the eradication of yellow fever, smallpox and elimination of the foci of insects that transmit tropical diseases. He died in 1917 at the age of 44.
Carlos Chagas, born in the city of Oliveira, Minas Gerais, in 1879, was a scientist who carried out remarkable research for Brazil and the world. He discovered Chagas disease, which affected the population. Chagas was trained at the Faculty of Medicine of Rio de Janeiro. But it was at the former Federal Serotherapy Institute, currently the Oswaldo Cruz Institute (IOC/Fiocruz), under the guidance of physician Oswaldo Cruz, that Carlos Chagas carried out his training as a scientist of excellence. There, he dedicated himself to various researches, such as the study of the evolutionary cycle of malaria in the blood and the fight against the disease, in addition to being responsible for the creation of research sections dedicated to tropical and infectious diseases.
Alcides Godoy, from Campinas, São Paulo, was born on January 7, 1880. He began his medical studies in Bahia, graduating in 1903 from the National Faculty of Medicine of Rio de Janeiro. Godoy joined the Oswaldo Cruz Institute in 1903, having been one of Oswaldo Cruz’s dedicated collaborators. In 1906, he discovered the vaccine against the “symptomatic carbuncle”, commonly known as the manqueira plague. He died in Rio de Janeiro on January 30, 1950.
Text: Maria Amélia Saad