The postdoctoral researcher at Laboratory for Translational Cancer Immunology, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, discussed the need for research into how CAR T-cells act differently between sexes.
“We think that these findings highlight that there seem to be differences in how CAR T-cells work in male and female patients, and I think we need a better understanding of what these differences are. By understanding these differences, we might be able to address these differences in the future, and thereby improve outcomes of CAR T-cell therapy as a whole, not only for male patients but also for female patients in the future.”
Female patients have significantly superior outcomes then male patients, even after adjusting other known risk variables, following treatment with axicabtagene ciloleucel (axi-cel), Kite Pharma’s chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy approved for relapsed/refractory large B-cell lymphoma (LBCL) under the name Yescarta. These data were presented by Veit Bücklein, Dr Med, postdoctoral researcher, Laboratory for Translational Cancer Immunology, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, in a poster at the 2023 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting & Exposition, held December 9-12, in San Diego, California.
The data included 119 male and 95 female patients with similar baseline patient characteristics except for ferritin levels (significantly higher in male patients prior to lymphodepletion), similar safety outcomes, but better overall response rate, progression free survival rate, and overall survival in female patients. CGTLive spoke with Bücklein to learn more about the new research and possible reasons for the difference in outcomes. He stressed that further work is needed to dig into how CAR T-cells act different between male and female patients.