Marcela V. Maus, MD, PhD
Director, Cellular Immunotherapy Program; Associate Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
The Maus laboratory is interested in using genetic engineering techniques to re-direct T cells to find and kill tumor cells, while sparing healthy tissues. They aim to develop new ways to design molecular receptors to target T cells to liquid and solid tumors; use T cells as delivery vehicles for other drugs, and use drugs to help T cells work against tumors; and understand how T cells can work as “living drugs” to treat patients with cancer. The Maus Lab focuses on T cell biology and T cell engineering. Chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) are synthetic molecules designed to re-direct T cells to specific antigens. Re-directing T cells with CARs is an alternative method of overcoming tolerance, and has shown great promise in the clinical setting for B cell malignancies such leukemia and lymphoma. However, successful application of this form of therapy to other cancers is likely to require refinements in the molecular and clinical technologies. The goal of the Maus lab is to design and evaluate next generation genetically-modified T cells as immunotherapy in patients with cancer.