CRI Funded Scientists

Cristina Gutierrez, MD, Clinical Accelerator Investigator

MD Anderson Cancer Center

Area of Research: All Cancers

Dr. Cristina Gutierrez is an associate professor at MD Anderson Cancer Center’s department of critical care. She is currently one of two study chairs for the clinical trial “ILIAD-7-US-O-InterLeukin-7 to improve Clinical Outcomes in Lymphopenic Patients with COVID-19 Infection” (NCT04426201).

Cancer patients with COVID-19, which has been associated with the depletion of important immune cells, are more vulnerable to severe disease and death due to their often compromised immune function. Compared to the general population, where 1-4% of patients die from COVID-19, between 13-28% of cancer patients succumb to the disease.

In this trial, treatment with recombinant human interleukin-7 (CYT107)—a cytokine which has been used to increase the levels of T cells in a variety of other diseases—will be investigated with respect to its ability to boost T cells in cancer patients with COVID-19. This trial will be one of the first seeking to understand how treatment with an immune-mediated cytokine might influence immune activity in the context of COVID-19 and cancer. Consequently, it could lead to important insights both for treating both COVID-19 and cancer in general.

Additional investigators working on this trial include:

  • Anne Rain Brown, PharmD, MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Cassian Yee, MD, MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • John Cuenca, MD, MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Joseph Nates, MD, MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Marcel van den Brink, MD, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Mayoora Muthu, D.O., MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Stephen M. Pastores, MD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (Study chair)

Projects and Grants

ILIAD-7-US-O-InterLeukin-7 to Improve Clinical Outcomes in Lymphopenic Patients with COVID-19 Infection (NCT04426201)

MD Anderson Cancer Center | All Cancers | 2020

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