Published on November 16, 2018
During a recent Town Meeting in Atlanta, Patient Power host and advocate Jack Aiello is joined by myeloma expert Dr. Jonathan Kaufman, from the Winship Cancer Institute, to give an update on immunotherapies for multiple myeloma. How can BiTES benefit myeloma patients? Dr. Kaufman discusses how BiTES work to treat myeloma, how this strategy compares to CAR-T cell therapy and explains where research is today. Tune in to find out more.
This town meeting is sponsored by Amgen, Janssen Pharmaceuticals and Adaptive Biotechnologies. It is produced by Patient Power in partnership with Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University.
Transcript | Developments in Myeloma: What Are BiTEs?
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I hear about something called BiTEs every so often. Can you explain what BiTEs are and what's happening in that area?
So on the slide we have in the T?cell section the CAR?T cells…
…CAR?T cells and BiTEs, and I'll just—I think it's important that they are in the same section. CAR?T cells are where we take someone's own T cells, the patient's own immune cells out of the body and then engineer those cells to recognize the myeloma as abnormal, and we infuse those cells.
BiTEs, or bi?specific T?cell engagers, are molecule that attach both to the myeloma cell, similar to the monoclonal antibodies, and the other side of the molecule attaches to a T cell. So instead of reengineering the T cell we have a molecule that attaches to the myeloma cell and attaches to the immune cell and brings them together and essentially does the same job, forces the T?cell to be physically in proximity, physically close to the myeloma cell, and then the T cell can then attack the myeloma cell.
And this is very early in development in myeloma, and we're just starting to hear that this also could be a potentially beneficial strategy similar to what we've seen with the CAR?T cells. There is history of BiTEs being effective in other cancers, and this is the first time that we're just starting to see information about BiTEs in myeloma.
So CAR?T cell involve harvesting your T?cell whereas BiTEs don't involve any of that, right?
Right. I think there's—and CAR?T cells in a large part is a single therapy, where BiTEs are ongoing therapy over a prolonged period of time.