Dr. John Leonard Comments on CAR T-Cell Therapy Outlook

Dr. John Leonard at State of the Science SummitChimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy is an emerging form of immunotherapy that leverages the strength of a patient’s own immune system to fight cancer.

Immune cells called T-cells are extracted from the patient’s blood and modified in the laboratory to produce chimeric antigen receptors, surface-level proteins that enable the T-cells to recognize and fight targeted antigenic tumor cells. The newly engineered T-cells are then cultivated in a lab before infusion back into the patient’s body, where they further multiply and go to work attacking cells that possess the antigen that they were programmed to destroy.

At the OncLive State of the Science Summit on Treatment of Hematologic Malignancies, Dr. John Leonard, who served as co-chair for the May 4 event, expressed promise in the use of CAR T-cell therapy for patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), in particular.

Dr. Leonard said that in a small group of clinical trial recipients with ALL, the immunotherapy has produced excellent, seemingly durable responses, and more data on CAR T-cells for patients with hard-to-treat lymphomas, like resistant forms of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), are forthcoming.

While patient selection is a crucial part of interpreting the data and planning for the future, Dr. Leonard believes that the main challenges in the development of CAR T-cell therapy relate to factors of patient selection such age, comorbidities, and aggressive cancers with prohibitive wait times for engineered cells, which can take as long as several weeks depending on the specific CAR product being used.

 “I think there’s no doubt that some patients benefit, but at least in the near-term, it’s going to be a relatively small number of patients that will get CAR T-cells for lymphoma,” he said.

Check out what else Dr. Leonard had to say about CAR T-cells in this video from OncLive:

 

State of the Science Summit: Treatment of Hematologic Malignancies

Dr. John Leonard and Dr. Peter Martin at State of the Science SummitWeill Cornell Medicine (WCM) and NewYork-Presbyterian (NYP) partnered with OncLive on May 4, 2017, to present the State of the Science Summit on Treatment of Hematologic Malignancies in Queens, NY.

The Lymphoma Program was well-represented at the Summit. Our own Drs. John Leonard and Peter Martin served as co-chairs for the event, which featured presentations from ten WCM/NYP hematologists and oncologists, and more than half of the talks focused on the latest science and research related to the diagnosis and treatment of various lymphoma types.

For videos and synopses of what our physician spoke about, stay tuned to our blog. Here’s an overview of the updates coming your way soon:

  • Dr. John Leonard on the emergence of CAR T-cell therapy
  • Dr. Peter Martin on the importance of patient preference and lifestyle when determining a mantle cell lymphoma treatment regimen
  • Dr. Richard Furman on risk assessment in an era of novel agents for CLL patients
  • Dr. Jia Ruan on new agents for treatment of peripheral T-cell lymphomas
  • Dr. Sarah Rutherford on two highly aggressive B-cell lymphomas
  • Dr. Lisa Roth on differences in treatment approaches for adult and adolescent lymphoma patients

OncLive State of the Science Summit

We’re proud to share that Dr. Peter Martin and Dr. John Leonard are co-hosting a State of the Science Summit on Hematologic Malignancies with OncLive in Queens on May 4, 2017.

This free event will feature educational sessions and a dinner and networking reception. All healthcare practitioners are welcome. Seats are limited, so register today: http://ow.ly/dfIx308iTis

OncLive State of the Science Agenda_Flyer