Available Technologies

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Novel biologics to treat T cell mediated inflammatory disease

Biologic therapeutic approach to modulating T cell inflammatory diseases by expressing isolated or recombinant combinations of WSX-1 or gp130 polypeptide with interacting proteins (such as p28, EBI3, Il-27) to inhibit pathological T cell development. 



The interleukin-27 receptor (WSX -1) is a heterodimeric type I cytokine receptor for interleukin-27 comprising the WSX-1 (alpha subunit) and glycoprotein 130 and is essential for initiation of Th1 cell differentiation. 



Dr. Christopher Hunter discovered that WSX-1 signaling has a negative effect on T cell responses. In fact, a WSX-1 fusion protein or soluble p28 (Il-30) is able to enhance the ability of Il-27 to inhibit T cell production of Il-2 and IFNγ as well as the T cell subset of Il-17 producing T cells, which is a major pathological T cell subset. Penn has pending proprietary rights to various polypeptide compositions which encompass this technology.



  • Il-27 is a potent immune suppressive cytokine when given exogenously in multiple experimental models of immune mediated disease with clinical utility.
  • Unlike other cytokines, such as type I IFNs or IL-12, there is no overt toxicity when IL-27 is used to treat mice.


Christopher Hunter 


Stage of Development: 

Preclinical proof of concept


Intellectual Property: 

Pending application in Canada; issued patents in US, European Union, and Mexico 


Reference Media: 

Immunity. 2003 Nov; 19(5):645-55. 


Desired Partnerships: 

  • License
  • Co-developments

Docket # S4226


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Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Melissa Kelly
Associate Director
University of Pennsylvania
Christopher Hunter