Dr. Kansagra on Updates With CAR T-Cell Therapy in Hematologic Cancers


Ankit Kansagra, MD, discusses key updates with CAR T-cell therapy in hematologic cancers.

Ankit Kansagra, MD, assistant professor in the Department of Internal Medicine at Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center of UT Southwestern Medical Center, discusses key updates with CAR T-cell therapy in hematologic cancers.

Many fantastic updates have been presented in CAR T-cell therapy in this space, with real-world evidence, says Kansagra. One of these updates has been seen with axicabtagene ciloleucel (axi-cel; Yescarta), which has been out for about 2 years now. More than 500 patients countrywide in more than 50 institutions were treated with this product and were monitored by the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research. Investigators noticed that this therapy was very efficacious, which is the most important information from the update, adds Kansagra. Sometimes, a drugmight appear to be efficacious in clinical trials but that activity is not replicated in the real world. The toxicity or safety profile of the agent in the real-world setting was also very comparable to what had been reported in clinical trials.

Another thing learned in the clinical setting is that medications to prevent or treat cytokine release syndrome (CRS) or other toxicitieswere more frequently used in the real-world setting than what had been seen in clinical trials. Medications, such as steroids and/or tocilizumab (Actemra), which is a common medication used to treat CRS, were used much more in the real-world setting than in clinical trials, concludes Kansagra.

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