Dr. Michael Har-Noy, founder and CEO of Immunovative Therapies Ltd., describes the “Mirror Effect™” as an immunologic concept that addresses the problem of separating the curative graft versus tumor (GVT) mechanism from the disastrous graft versus host disease (GVHD) complication of bone marrow transplant (BMT) procedures.
Immunovative Therapies’ solution was to formulate a T-cell infusion that would mirror the immune mechanisms mediated by the transplanted donor immune system to instead be controlled by the patient’s own immune cells. Dr. Michael Har-Noy has named this concept the Mirror Effect™ and says it was designed to produce the same anti-tumor effect that has been shown to be curative in allogeneic bone marrow transplant procedures but without life-threatening toxicity.
In the Mirror Effect™, the direction of the closely related GVT and GVHD effects that stem from the infused graft are reversed or “mirrored” so that they originate from the host instead, thereby mediating a host versus tumor (HVT) response coupled to the non-toxic host versus graft (HVG) rejection effect.
To produce the Mirror Effect™, T-cells from a normal person are given to a patient and instead of these infused cells initiating a GVT effect, they stimulate the patient's own immune system to attack the cancer (HVT effect) and create a highly inflammatory environment which neutralizes tumor immunoavoidance mechanisms.
Dr. Michael Har-Noy goes on to say that because the HVT response must be coupled to a HVG rejection, the patient in these instances is not pre-treated by immunosuppressive chemotherapy and therefore has an intact immune system that can mount a response to reject the normal donor T-cells. Also, because rejection of the graft (HVG) is the desired outcome, it is preferable if the donor cells are mismatched to the patient. This is a crucial improvement over allogeneic BMT procedures where only one in three recipient patients has a related donor that is suitable.
The “Mirror EffectTM” therefore involves infusion of mismatched donor cells into a cancer patient that has not received any previous chemotherapy so that these infused allogeneic donor cells are rejected by the patient’s immune system. This HVG effect is the “mirror” of the lethal GVHD response but is not toxic. The HVG rejection then initiates host-mediated tumor destruction (HVT), which is the “mirror” of the GVT effect. The “mirror” effect is therefore capable of imitating the beneficial GVT effect of allogeneic BMT while at the same time avoiding the catastrophic GVHD toxicity.
The “Mirror EffectTM” has the potential to create an entire new field of oncology.