Dr. Wierda on Using CD19-Targeted CAR T Cells in CLL


William G. Wierda, MD, PhD, discusses the use of CD19-targeted CAR T-cell therapy in the treatment of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

William G. Wierda, MD, PhD, professor, D. B. Lane Cancer Research Distinguished Professor, section chief of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, center medical director, Department of Leukemia, Division of Cancer Medicine, and executive medical director, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses the use of CD19-targeted CAR T-cell therapy in the treatment of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

In CLL, CAR T-cell therapy is investigational, says Wierda, whereas in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and diffuse large B-cell leukemia there are 2 FDA-approved products that are available for use.

In the ongoing phase I/II TRANSCEND trial, investigators are evaluating lisocabtagene maraleucel (liso-cel; JCAR017) in patients with relapsed/refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma and CLL. Early data from the trial showed a 43.8% complete response rate in patients with heavily pretreated CLL, which is lower than what has been reported in ALL, says Wierda. As such, further investigation into CD19-targeted CAR T cells is needed in order to maximize their benefit in CLL, Wierda concludes.

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