"I’m certainly excited about the promise of CAR T cells for patients with lymphoid leukemia (ALL and CLL). It’s clear from the data presented and published that CAR T cells can induce remissions in patients refractory to multiple lines of therapy,” said Timothy Graubert, MD, Hagler Family Chair in Oncology and Director of the Hematologic Malignancy Program at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.
“The studies are moving beyond the initial phase at a few centers. The process for manufacturing the cells is becoming more efficient. Industry has begun to partner with academic medical centers, and I think we will see a new era, where this treatment will become more widely available than it is right now,” he continued.
“The burning question is whether this is a ‘one-trick pony’ or can this type of treatment be applied to other tumors as well,” Dr. Graubert said. “ALL and CLL were logical targets in the initial studies, for a number of reasons. Time will tell whether CAR T cells will find other uses.” ■
Disclosure: Dr. Graubert reported no potential conflicts of interest.
As more experience is gained with the use of genetically engineered chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells in patients with leukemia, the data continue to be highly encouraging. Three different groups using slightly different modifications of CAR T cells reported positive experiences in treating...