WVU Cancer Institute Cellular Therapy Program doubles CAR-T offerings with two new treatments

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The WVU Cancer Institute Osborn Hematopoietic Malignancy and Cellular Therapy Program is offering two new forms of chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR-T) therapy for the treatment of lymphoma. These additions double the offerings of the CAR-T therapy line offered by the Institute.

Lauren Veltri, M.D.
Lauren Veltri, M.D.

The Institute is now able to offer Breyanzi from Juno Therapeutics, Inc., a Bristol-Myers Squibb company, to patients with relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma after two or more lines of systemic therapy, relapsed/refractory primary mediastinal large B-cell lymphoma, and relapsed/refractory grade 3B follicular lymphoma. It is also able to offer Abecma for relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma after four or more prior lines of therapy, including an immunomodulatory agent, a proteosome inhibitor, and an anti-CD38 monoclonal antibody, have proven ineffective. 

“These therapies offer a last line of treatment for patients in many cases,” Lauren Veltri, M.D., WVU Medicine Hematopoietic Malignancy and Cellular Therapy Program director, said. “By harnessing the patients’ immune system, we are able to train their own immune cells to target the cancer and destroy it.”

CAR-T therapy is a form of immunotherapy that uses the patient’s own immune system to fight cancer. It is performed by collecting the patient’s own T-cells and sending them to the manufacturer to genetically engineer the cells into the CAR-T therapy to fight the CD19 antigen on cancer cells and eradicate the disease. 

The therapy is infused into patients, and they are monitored for side effects. Patients are required to stay within 30 minutes of J.W. Ruby Memorial Hospital for the first 30 days after infusion so they may receive treatment if side effects occur.

For more information on the WVU Cancer Institute, visit WVUMedicine.org/Cancer