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Hope and Progress in CAR-T Cell Therapy for Myeloma

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Published on January 16, 2019

At a recent town meeting in Atlanta, an audience member asks, “Who is a good candidate for BiTES vs. CAR-T cell therapy?” Renowned multiple myeloma expert Dr. Jonathan Kaufman, from the Winship Cancer Institute, responds by explaining where research is today with the novel agents, how they work to treat myeloma and what the side effect profiles are. Dr. Kaufman also discusses a challenge of CAR-T and the goal of clinical research with immunotherapy. Watch now 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.

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Transcript | Hope and Progress in CAR-T Cell Therapy for Myeloma

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That's how you’ll get care that's most appropriate for you.

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you.

Audience Member:

Jermain Mobly, still on CAR-T, from the descriptions earlier there appear to be some pros and cons with CAR-T versus BiTEs, in terms of frequency of treatment and harvesting external versus internal cells.  What would make a candidate more of a—a patient more of a candidate for one versus the other?  

Jack Aiello:

So BiTEs versus CAR-T?  

Audience Member:

Yes.  

Dr. Kaufman:

I think that's an excellent question.  I don't think that's been determined yet.  They're both so young.  I think they both have very similar side effect profiles because ultimately what's happening is the same thing, which is the immune cell is interacting with the myeloma cell, and it's that interaction that's associated with the complications like the high fever and so forth.  

The challenge with the CAR-T, and this might be where having a drug on the shelf is different than a CAR-T, as Dana mentioned, the CAR-T was collected one month and then given four or six weeks later, and people—if people's myeloma is very active people might not be able to go four or six weeks without therapy.  So that might be one situation where if therapy was needed immediately where something off the shelf was better than a CAR-T.  

On the other side, this concept that, really a hope, for CAR-T would be find something that's very well tolerated and then this essentially becomes a living drug, is to have long-lasting CAR-T cells maybe even at a very low level every time the myeloma tries to come up, instead of pulling a drug off the shelf the body knows and activates the T-cells in the body.  That's sort of a—that's a future hope, but that would—if we could create that drug then that would be a great drug for everybody.

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you.