Marcela Maus, MD, PhD, on New Questions With CAR-T's Rise in Solid Tumors

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The Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School discussed CAR T’s journey to treating solid tumors.

“With CAR T therapy, I think we're right on the cusp. Things are looking promising. It may not be with the tumors that everyone expected it to be in. And I think we're going to learn a lot as these trials move forward, about, what the best dosing and schedule is for CAR T, how we give them in combinations, what are the long-term toxicities? What's the durability, what levels of engraftment? What levels of persistence? I think it's really just getting started.”

While chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy has seen success in treating hematological malignancies, hurdles remain to using the mode of therapy for treating solid tumors. Many centers and companies are actively working to combat these challenges with different technologies and platforms.

CGTLive spoke with Marcela Maus, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, and director, cellular immunotherapy, Cancer Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, to learn more aboutthe journey of CAR T-cell therapies in treating solid tumors and how enthusiasm in the field has waxed and waned. She shared questions that arise as CAR T becomes more of a feasible treatment option for solid tumors, including the best dosing and schedule, ideal combinations, long-term persistence and long-term toxicities with this mode of treatment. She urged researchers and investigators to have patience and persistence with CAR T-cell therapies, as she believes the mode is incredibly promising but may need a few tweaks and tries to work the best in patients. Maus also touched on CAR T-cell research ongoing at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, including CAR T-cells delivering EGFR-targeted T-cell engagers in patients with glioblastoma

REFERENCE
Novel tandem CAR T-cell effective against heterogeneous glioblastoma. Website. Massachusetts General Hospital. https://advances.massgeneral.org/neuro/journal.aspx?id=2456
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