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Overview


JUNO IS A CLINICAL-STAGE COMPANY THAT BRINGS TOGETHER THREE OF THE WORLD’S LEADING CANCER CENTERS

Juno is a clinical-stage company that brings together three of the world’s leading cancer centers – Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and Seattle Children’s Research Institute – in unique partnership to advance a broad pipeline of breakthrough immunotherapies. With one of the largest ever Series A investments for a biotech startup, Juno will build on the foundation of novel immunotherapies to develop two distinct and complementary platforms – CARs and TCRs. 

The CAR technology is designed to target cell surface antigens that are expressed on cancer cells.  In addition, the high-affinity TCR technology can also detect alterations in intracellular proteins present in tumor cells. These treatments have the potential to reduce longer-term toxicities associated with chemotherapeutics. Our goal is to drive multiple product candidates in select hematologic and solid tumor cancers to FDA licensure. Each product candidate has the potential to treat a variety of high-risk cancers.

 

Juno’s leadership brings together some of the world’s leading immunotherapy researchers, accomplished venture capital investors and experienced business leaders to drive toward the goal of multiple FDA-licensed curative therapies. 

SCIENTIFIC FOUNDERS


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DR. RENIER BRENTJENS

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DR. PHIL GREENBERG

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DR. MICHAEL JENSEN

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DR. STAN RIDDELL

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DR. ISABELLE RIVIÈRE

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DR. MICHEL SADELAIN

DR. RENIER BRENTJENS

Scientific co-founder

Dr Brentjens obtained an MD/PhD (microbiology) from SUNY Buffalo, completed residency in medicine at Yale-New Haven Hospital, and a medical oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC).  Currently, Dr Brentjens is an associate member on the faculty at MSKCC and an attending physician on the Leukemia Service.  As a medical oncology fellow at MSKCC, Dr Brentjens initiated the initial pre-clinical studies demonstrating the potential clinical application of autologous T cells genetically modified to target the CD19 antigen through the retroviral gene transfer of artificial T cell receptors termed chimeric antigen receptors (CARs).  Following completion of his medical oncology training, Dr Brentjens became the principle investigator of his own laboratory.  As a PI, Dr Brentjens successfully translated these studies to the clinical setting, treating patients with relapsed CD19+ tumors including chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL).  Ongoing pre-clinical research in the laboratory is focused on the further development of CAR modified T cells designed to overcome the hostile immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment through the generation of “armored CAR T cells” currently being translated to the clinical setting as second generation CAR modified T cell clinical trials.  Additionally, work in the Brentjens’ lab has expanded this CAR technology to target additional tumor antigens.

More Info on Dr. Brentjens

DR. PHIL GREENBERG

Scientific co-founder

Dr. Greenberg graduated from Washington University with a degree in biology. He received his M.D. summa cum laude from the State University of New York, Downstate Medical Center, in 1971. After postdoctoral training in immunology at the University of California at San Diego, he completed his clinical training in medical oncology and joined the faculty of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the Division of Oncology at the University of Washington in 1978.  He is currently the Head of the Program in Immunology at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and has a joint appointment at the University of Washington as Professor in the Oncology Division of the Department of Medicine and as Professor in the Department of Immunology. Dr. Greenberg’s research has always maintained a focus on both basic immunology and cancer immunobiology as a means to develop translational approaches to treat human malignancies and chronic infections, particularly employing adoptive T cell therapy as a strategy to treat patients with antigen-specific T cells that can selectively target their disease. He has received international recognition as a leader in the field of cancer immunology, as reflected by election to several honorary societies, including the American Society of Clinical Investigation, the American Association of Physicians, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American College of Physicians. He has also been the recipient of two NIH MERIT awards. In 2010 he, along with past and present members of his research group, received the International Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) Team Science Award for Career Achievements (2010), and in 2011 he shared, with Steve Rosenberg from the NCI, the Cancer Research Institute’s William B. Coley Award for Distinguished Research in Tumor Immunology for their independent studies to develop and translate adoptive T cell therapy of cancer.

More Info on Dr. Greenberg

DR. MICHAEL JENSEN

Scientific co-founder

Dr. Michael Jensen graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine then completed training in Pediatric Hematology and Oncology at the University of Washington/Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Dr. Jensen trained in the laboratory of Philip Greenberg and received AACR’s 1996 Fellowship in Clinical/Translational Research.  Following completion of his fellowship, Dr. Jensen joined the faculty at the Beckman Research Institute at City of Hope where he served for thirteen years and progressed from an Assistant Professor to a full Professor.  There, Dr. Jensen built a translational research program integrating synthetic antigen receptor design and T cell gene transfer as a strategy to implement immunotherapy for cancer.   Dr. Jensen initiated the first CAR T cell trials using CD20 and CD19 specific CARs, as well as first in human trials for children with neuroblastoma and malignant gliomas.  Based on this productivity, the Beckman Research Institute created the Department of Cancer Immunotherapeutics & Tumor Immunology and incorporated into the institution’s NCI-Comprehensive Cancer Center the Cancer Immunotherapeutics Program with Dr Jensen as its leader.  During his tenure at City of Hope, Dr Jensen’s research program placed a strong emphasis on bench-to-bedside translational research and resulted in five FDA-authorized Investigational New Drug Applications covering first-in-human applications of adoptive transfer of genetically engineered T-cells having re-directed tumor specificity for lymphoma, neuroblastoma, and malignant gliomas. Dr. Jensen joined the University of Washington School of Medicine faculty in 2010 as the Sinegal Endowed Professor of Pediatrics.  He is a Joint Member of the FHCRC’s Division of Clinical Research and is an Adjunct Professor of Bioengineering at the UWSOM.  His laboratory research program is located at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute, and he is the founding director of the Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research.  He has founded SCRI’s new Program in Cell and Gene Therapy and directs the institute’s Therapeutic Cell Production Core.

More Info on Dr. Jensen

DR. STAN RIDDELL

Scientific co-founder

Stan Riddell is a member of the Clinical Research Division at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Professor of Oncology at the University of Washington School of Medicine. Dr. Riddell is a leader in developing therapies that harness the immune system to fight cancer and infectious diseases. His research led to patented technologies that rapidly expand the number of disease fighting T cells used in adoptive immunotherapy. He also isolated a rare subset of disease-fighting T cells that survive in patients for an extraordinary amount of time. In 2010, Dr. Riddell received the International Society for Biological Therapy of Cancer’s first Team Science Award for major contributions to research and the clinical translation of cancer immunotherapy. Dr. Riddell received his M.D. from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg. He joined FHCRC Faculty in 1991 after training in medical oncology and immunology. Dr. Riddell was recently elected to the Association of American Physicians, an organization honoring those who have achieved excellence in biomedical science.

More Info on Dr. Riddell

DR. ISABELLE RIVIÈRE

Scientific co-founder

Isabelle Rivière received her Ph. D. in Cellular and Molecular Biology from the University of Paris in 1993.  She initiated her graduate studies in the Interferon Research Group at the Institut Curie, Paris and completed her thesis work in the laboratory of Richard Mulligan,Ph.D at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Cambridge, MA.  During this time, she developed the MFG/SFG-based gamma-retroviral vectors for in vivo long-term expression of transgenes in hematopoietic cells, which are currently used in multiple clinical trials for the treatment of hereditary blood disorders and cancer. She subsequently worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dan Littman, MD, Ph.D at New York University, New York, NY. Her studies focused on the regulation of cytokines produce by T helper lymphocytes in vivo, based on a mouse model she developed to track IL-4 secreting T cells using homologous recombination in embryonic stem cells. Dr. Rivière joined the faculty of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in 1999.  She is currently the Director of the Cell Therapy and Cell Engineering Facility where she investigates novel strategies for cell therapies and immunotherapies to increase or retarget the immune response against tumors and treat hematological disorders. Her laboratory has developed multiple processes for clinical-grade gamma-retroviral and lentiviral vector production as well as hematopoietic and T cell manufacturing. Dr. Rivière serves on the editorial board of Molecular Therapy: Methods and Clinical Development and on multiple committees of the Association of Academic Biologics Manufacturers (AABM), the International Society for Cellular Therapy (ISCT) and the American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy (ASGCT).

More Info on Dr. Rivière

DR. MICHEL SADELAIN

Scientific co-founder

Dr. Michel Sadelain is Head of the Gene Transfer and Gene Expression  Laboratory at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC).  Dr. Sadelain’s research focuses on novel approaches to enhance T cell costimulation and function. His clinical program focuses on B cell malignancies as well as solid tumors. Dr. Sadelain is the incumbent of the Stephen and Barbara Friedman Chair and the founding director of the Center for Cell Engineering at MSKCC. He previously served on the board of directors of the American Society of Gene Therapy (2004-2007) and continues to serve on the editorial boards of Molecular Therapy, Human Gene Therapy and Gene Therapy. 

More Info on Dr. Sadelain

HANS BISHOP

CEO and Co-founder

Hans Bishop is one of our co-founders and has served as Chief Executive Officer since Juno’s inception. He served as an Executive in Residence at Warburg Pincus, a global private equity firm with significant investment experience in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. Prior to this, he acted as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Dendreon, a Seattle-based biotechnology company that develops immunotherapy products used in cancer treatment. He has served as President of Specialty Medicine at Bayer Healthcare, Senior Vice President of Global Commercial Operations at Chiron Corporation, and Vice President and General Manager of European Biopharmaceuticals. Mr. Bishop previously held various positions at Glaxo Wellcome and SmithKlineBeecham. He serves on the Board of Directors of Avanir Pharmaceuticals. Mr. Bishop earned a B.S. in chemistry from Brunel University in London.

DR. ANTHONY EVNIN

Director

Anthony Evnin is a Partner of Venrock, a venture capital firm, which he joined in 1974.  He is currently a Director of Acceleron Pharma, Inc., AVEO Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Infinity Pharmaceuticals, Inc. as well as Constellation Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a private company.  Mr. Evnin was formerly a director of many other biotechnology companies.  He serves as a Trustee of The Rockefeller University, as a Trustee of The Jackson Laboratory, as a Member of the Boards of Overseers and Managers of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, as a Member of the Board of Directors of the New York Genome Center, as a Member of the Board of Directors of the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation, and as a Trustee Emeritus of Princeton University.  Mr. Evnin received an A.B. from Princeton University in 1962 and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1966.

DR. RICHARD KLAUSNER

Director and Co-founder

Dr. Klausner is currently Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Illumina Corporation. He is also chairman of Audax Health. Previously, he has served as managing partner of the venture capital firm, The Column Group, was the Executive Director for Global Health of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and was the eleventh director of the National Cancer Institute between 1995 and 2001. Dr. Klausner served as chief of the cell biology and metabolism branch of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development as well as a past president of the American Society of Clinical Investigation. He has also been Chairman of the National Science Education Standards Projects of the National Academy of Sciences.  He is the Chief Strategy Advisor for USAID and has served in senior advisory roles to the US, Norwegian, Qatari and Indian governments. He currently chairs the International Advisory Board for Samsung and previously chaired the Strategic Oversight Council of Sanofi. He currently serves on numerous advisory boards.

Dr. Klausner is well known for his work in cell and molecular biology, and has been the author of more than 300 scientific articles and several books, in addition to receiving numerous awards and honors. He has served as an Advisor to the Presidents of the Academies for counter-terrorism, and Liaison to the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Medicine and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

ROBERT NELSEN

Director and Co-founder

Robert Nelsen is a co-founder and a Managing Director of ARCH Venture Partners. He joined ARCH at its founding and played a significant role in the early sourcing, financing and development of more than thirty companies, including twelve which have reached valuations exceeding $1 billion. His seed and early-stage investments include Illumina (ILMN); Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (ALNY); Sapphire Energy; Ikaria; Kythera (KYTH), Aviron (AVIR, acquired by Medimmune-MEDI); Agios Pharmaceuticals (AGIO), NetBot (acquired by Excite-ATHM); R2 Technology (acquired by Hologic-HOLX); XenoPort (XNPT); Caliper Life Sciences (CALP); Trubion Pharmaceuticals (TRBN), Adolor (ADLR, acquired by Cubist); Array BioPharma (ARRY); deCODE Genetics (acquired by Amgen-AMGN); Nanosys; GenVec (GNVC); IDUN Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer-PFE); Genomica (GNOM, acquired by Exelixis-EXEL); Classmates.com (acquired by United Online-UNTD); Nura (acquired by Omeros-OMER); Receptos (RCPT); Kilimanjaro Energy; Bluebird Bio (BLUE); Hua Medicine; VLST; Ensemble Therapeutics; Accelerator; Theraclone Sciences; Fate Therapeutics (FATE); and Everyday Learning Corporation (acquired by Tribune Corp.-TRIB.)

Mr. Nelsen is a director of Agios, Ikaria, Fate Therapeutics, Sage Pharmaceuticals, Ensemble Therapeutics, Kythera Biopharmaceuticals, and serves as Chairman of Hua Medicine. He also serves as a Trustee of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Institute, the Institute for Systems Biology, and is a director of the National Venture Capital Association. Mr. Nelsen holds an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago and a B.S. from the University of Puget Sound with majors in Economics and Biology.

More Info on Mr. Nelsen

HOWARD PIEN

Director

Howard Pien has worked in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries for over 30 years. From 2007 to 2009, he was the Chairman and CEO of MedareX, a public biotechnology company, until it was acquired by BMS. From 2003 to 2006, he was the Chairman and CEO of Chiron, a public biotechnology company, which was acquired by Novartis. Between 1991 and 2003, he held various positions in GlaxoSmithKline, a multinational pharmaceutical company, and its predecessor, Smith Kline Beecham, as head of New Product Development, head of US Marketing, head of North Asia, head of UK, head of US, head of International, and as head of Worldwide Pharmaceuticals Operations. Prior to GSK, Howard worked for AbbottLabs for siX years and Merck & Co., Inc. for five years, in Various marketing and sales positions. He currently serves as a Director on the Boards of Viropharma (as Lead Independent Director), Vanda (as Non-Executive Chairman), lmmunogen, and Talon, all public biotechnology companies, and lkaria, a privately-held specialty pharmaceutical company. He is also an advisor to the Life Sciences Practice of Warburg Pincus, a private equity firm. Previously, Howard served on various non-profit boards, including the industry associations BIO and PhRMA, as well as Oakland Children’s Hospital and Fox Chase Hospital. He graduated from MIT with a BS in civil engineering, and from Carnegie-Mellon University with an MBA. His principal residence is in Cherry Hill, NJ.

DR. MARC TESSIER-LAVIGNE

Director

Marc Tessier-Lavigne is President of The Rockefeller University in New York City, where he is also Carson Family Professor and head of the Laboratory of Brain Development and Repair.  A world leader in the study of brain development, he pioneered identification of molecules that direct the formation of neural circuits in the brain and spinal cord. He also studies nerve cell responses to injury and the mechanisms underlying nerve cell death in neurodegenerative disease.  Dr. Tessier-Lavigne holds undergraduate degrees from McGill and Oxford universities and a PhD from University College London.  He performed postdoctoral work at the MRC Developmental Neurobiology Unit in London and at Columbia University, and has served on the faculties of the University of California, San Francisco and of Stanford University, where he was the Susan B. Ford Professor and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator. In 2003, he joined Genentech, where he became Executive Vice President for Research and Chief Scientific Officer.  He joined Rockefeller in 2011.  A Rhodes Scholar, Tessier-Lavigne is the recipient of numerous scientific awards and is an elected member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and its Institute of Medicine, and a fellow of the Royal Societies of the United Kingdom and Canada. 

DR. JOSÉ BASELGA

Chairman of Clinical Advisory Board

José Baselga is the Physician-in-Chief at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New York City. His research interests are in clinical breast cancer and in translational and early clinical research. He conducted the initial clinical trials with the monoclonal antibodies cetuximab and trastuzumab and is leading the clinical development of several new agents including pertuzumab, everolimus and PI3K inhibitors. His main focus in the laboratory and in the clinic is in the area of novel anti-HER2 agents, in the identification of mechanisms of resistance to anti-HER2 agents and therapeutic approaches to target the PI3K pathway. He is also leading a number of neo-adjuvant trials in breast cancer and has been at the forefront of developing biomarker-based early and translational clinical trials. He lead the two large phase III studies with pertuzumab in HER2 and everolimus in ER+ breast cancer that resulted in the approval of these two agents for the therapy of patients with breast cancer.

Dr. Baselga is past President of ESMO and a past member of the Board of Directors of AACR and ASCO. Dr. Baselga has received a number of awards including a Young Investigator Award (1992) and a Career Development Award from ASCO (1994), Elected Member of the American Society of Clinical Investigation (2004); AACR-Rosenthal Family Foundation Award (2008); King James I Award (2008); and the EACR Mike Price Gold Medal (2012).  He is the funding editor-in-chief on the new AACR flagship journal Cancer Discovery. Dr. Baselga has published over 300 peer-reviewed articles.

Dr. Baselga received his M.D. and Ph.D. degree from the Universidad Autonoma of Barcelona. He completed a fellowship in Medical Oncology at MSKCC. Prior to his current position he was the founding Director of the Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology in Barcelona, Spain and Chief of the Division of Hematology/Oncology, Associate Director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center in Boston and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

DR. LARRY COREY

Co-founder and Senior Scientific Advisor

Dr. Lawrence Corey is President and Director Emeritus of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and a member of its faculty in the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Division. He is also professor of medicine and laboratory medicine at the University of Washington and holder of the Lawrence Corey Endowed Chair in Medical Virology at the University of Washington.

Dr. Corey is an internationally renowned expert in virology, T-cell immunology and vaccine development. His research focuses on the immunology of herpes viruses, HIV and infections related to cancer and he is known for his expertise in translational medicine, clinical trial design and drug development. He is also co-principal investigator of the HIV Vaccine Trials Network, an international collaboration of scientists and institutions dedicated to accelerating the development of HIV vaccine.

Larry is known for his leadership skills in developing collaborative networks of scientists to tackle difficult scientific problems. His honors and awards include election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and to the Institute of Medicine. Awards include the American Society for STD Research Parran Award, the University of Michigan Medical School Distinguished Alumnus Award, the Infectious Diseases Society of America Ender’s Award and the Cubist Award from the American Society of Microbiology.

Corey received his medical degree from the University of Michigan. He has authored more than 670 scientific publications, 12 books and more than 140 book chapters and editorials.

Partnerships


Advances in the research laboratories of Juno’s founding partners – Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and Seattle Children’s Research Institute – have defined effective cancer immunotherapy.

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Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, founded in 1975, is an independent, nonprofit organization whose mission is to eliminate cancer and other diseases as a cause of human suffering and death. Its roster of internationally acclaimed scientists, both current and former, includes three Nobel laureates and a MacArthur fellow. Fred Hutch engages in multifaceted research, from investigating the fundamental causes of cancer to expediting the translation of laboratory advances into clinical care. The Hutch is perhaps best known for pioneering the development of bone marrow transplantation and its spinoff, immunotherapy, which harnesses the power of the immune system to fight cancer.

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Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center is the world’s oldest and largest private cancer center with more than 125 years devoted to exceptional patient care, innovative research, and outstanding educational programs. Memorial Sloan-Kettering is one of 41 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers, with state-of-the-art science flourishing side by side with clinical studies and treatment.

The close collaboration between physicians and scientists enables Memorial Sloan-Kettering to provide patients with the best care available as they work to discover more-effective strategies to prevent, control, and ultimately cure cancer in the future. Memorial Sloan-Kettering’s education programs train future physicians and scientists, and the knowledge and experience they gain at Memorial Sloan-Kettering has an impact on cancer treatment and biomedical research around the world.

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Located in downtown Seattle’s biotech corridor, Seattle Children’s Research Institute is pushing the boundaries of medical research to find cures for pediatric diseases and improve outcomes for children all over the world. Internationally recognized investigators and staff at the research institute are advancing new discoveries in cancer, genetics, immunology, pathology, infectious disease, injury prevention and bioethics, among others. As part of Seattle Children’s Hospital, the research institute brings together leading minds in pediatric research to provide patients with the best care possible. Seattle Children’s serves as the primary teaching, clinical and research site for the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Washington School of Medicine, which consistently ranks as one of the best pediatric departments in the country.

Founding Investors


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Alaska Permanent Fund invested through CLAlaska LP, a partnership managed by Crestline Investors

ARCH Venture

Alaska Permanent Fund / Crestline Investors

Alaska Permanent Fund invested through CLAlaska LP, a partnership managed by Crestline Investors

Scientific Background


The human immune system is composed of an interactive network of specialized immune cells called lymphocytes. Collectively, lymphocytes provide powerful host defenses through a process called immune surveillance, in which certain lymphocytes called T cells circulate through the body searching for diseased cells. T cells, once having responded to an infectious pathogen, can form memory T cells capable of persisting for decades and launching a protective immune response upon recontact with the original pathogen. In fact, vaccination has been an effective way to establish memory T cell responses against viral proteins, and in turn protect against specific viral infections. 

However, in regards to cancer, T cells face a more daunting challenge. T cells must distinguish between cancer tissue and similarly appearing normal tissue to avoid causing

autoimmune disease.  As such, T cells require a unique set of cellular signals that in the right sequence and balance either lead to target cell elimination or target cell preservation.  It is through several of these signaling mechanisms that cancer cells can actually impair T cell responses, resulting in the peaceful coexistence of tumor cells and immune cells. Juno is developing novel immunotherapy platforms that harness the potency of memory T cells, redirecting them to targets expressed on or in cancer cells.  Using synthetic receptors and/or augmented natural antigen receptors, Juno’s T cell reprogramming technologies enable the creation of a powerful anti-tumor immune response built from the patient’s own immune system. This transformative approach has the potential of reducing or eliminating the need for debilitating surgery, radiation and chemotherapy.

 

Platforms


Immunotherapy harnesses the power of the human immune system with the potential to rid the body of disease.

Recently, immunotherapy approaches, which target proteins (antigens) synthesized within malignant cells and displayed on the cancer cells’ surface, have demonstrated significant therapeutic promise. 

Juno technology provides a significant advance in the field of immunotherapy by isolating the most powerful T cells within

the immune system.  Juno technology reprograms a cancer patient’s own T cells to specifically detect a tumor-associated antigen on the surface of cells either alone or together with a person’s own tissue markers, called HLA or human leukocyte antigens.  These reprogrammed targeted T cells are then infused into the cancer patient and subsequently eliminate the targeted cells.

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CHIMERIC ANTIGEN RECEPTORS (CARs)

T cells obtained from the blood of cancer patients can be modified to recognize the tumor cells and activate the T cells.  This modification is called a Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR), which endows T cells with the ability to recognize tumor cells and become activated without other signals. Data from clinical trials have demonstrated the capacity of CAR-modified T cells to eradicate treatment-resistant cancers even when patients had large tumor burden. CARs also have the capability to bind to tumor-associated antigens in an HLA-independent fashion. Therefore, one receptor construct can be used to treat all patients with tumors expressing the target antigen.

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T CELL RECEPTORS (TCRs)

T cell receptors are the molecules naturally utilized by T cells to recognize target antigens. TCRs target antigens in association with additional cell surface molecules called HLAs. T cells with high-affinity TCRs are modified with TCR sequences that bind more tightly to a target antigen/HLA complex. Thus, high-affinity TCR-based strategies can target tumor proteins inside the tumor cell. Further, given the association with an individual’s HLA proteins these cells are effective in only those patients who have the specific HLA molecule targeted by the high-affinity TCR. Some HLA molecules are  common in individuals (e.g., HLA-A2), which allows such targeted TCRs to be effective in nearly half of the US population.  Juno is initially targeting tumor antigens in patients expressing HLA-A2. Once therapeutic efficacy is confirmed in these patients, additional high-affinity TCR-targeting molecules will be constructed to broaden the therapy to patients with other common HLA types. Data from early phase clinical trials have demonstrated the capacity of high-affinity TCR T cells to eradicate leukemia in individuals who have relapsed after hematopoietic stem cell transplant. 

BREADTH OF TECHNOLOGY

Cancer can result from alterations in antigens that are expressed either on the cell surface or within the tumor cell.  The Juno CAR technology is designed to target cell surface tumor-associated antigens that are expressed on cancer cells.  In contrast, the Juno TCR technology detects alterations in intracellular antigens present in cancer cells that are ultimately expressed on the tumor cell surface in conjunction with HLA molecules.  Thus, Juno has the technical capability to target a large universe of cancer-associated antigens providing opportunities to treat a broad range of cancers.

Juno’s pipeline of therapeutic T cell products will leverage not only state-of-the-art CAR and TCR technologies, but combine these with advances made by the Company’s Scientific Founders in understanding the immunobiology of T cell subsets. Together with Juno’s development of next generation T cell engineering, Juno is poised to deliver potent reprogrammed T cell products of defined composition with regulated control systems and “kill switch” technologies.  For patients, these innovations have the potential to translate into revolutionary immunotherapies.

CAR T CELLS ERADICATING NEUROBLASTOMA

From the Jensen Lab, Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research, Seattle Children’s Research Institute.

NEWS


May 21, 2014

JUNO SCIENTIFIC FOUNDERS RECEIVE NYIPLA INVENTOR of the YEAR AWARD

Juno Therapeutics congratulated two of its scientific founders, Drs. Michel Sadelain and Renier J. Brentjens of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, for winning the esteemed New York Intellectual Property Law Association (NYIPLA) “Inventor of the Year” award.  Sadelain and Brentjens were recognized for their extensive work in the design of chimeric antigen receptors (CARs).

Apr 24, 2014

JUNO COMPLETES $176M SERIES A ROUND

Juno Therapeutics today announced the close of its Series A round with $176M in fully committed funds and the appointment of Mark W. Frohlich, M.D. as Executive Vice President of R&D and Barney Cassidy as General Counsel. 

Mar 31, 2014

JUNO THERAPEUTICS APPOINTS BIOTECH INVESTMENT BANKING LEADER STEVE HARR AS CFO AND HEAD OF CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT

Juno Therapeutics, a biotechnology company focused on bringing forward novel immunotherapies for cancer, announced today that Steve Harr, M.D., will join the company as its Chief Financial Officer and Head of Corporate Development.  Harr currently serves as Managing Director and Head of Biotechnology Investment Banking at Morgan Stanley.

Jan 13, 2014

JUNO ANNOUNCES NEW INVESTMENTS, LEADERSHIP APPOINTMENTS

Cancer immunotherapy biotech startup Juno announced an expanded Series A including Bezos Expeditions and venture capital firm Venrock. Marc Tessier-Lavigne, Ph.D., Anthony B. Evnin, Ph.D., and Howard H. Pien will join the company’s Board of Directors and José Baselga, M.D., Ph.D. will serve as chairman of Juno’s Clinical Advisory Board. 

Dec 04, 2013

LEADING CANCER RESEARCH CENTERS TEAM UP TO LAUNCH BIOTECH STARTUP FOCUSED ON CANCER IMMUNOTHERAPY

The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, along with pediatric partner Seattle Children’s Research Institute, have joined forces to launch Juno Therapeutics Inc., a new biotechnology company focused on bringing forward novel immunotherapies for cancer.