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Immune system therapy shows against promise against cancer

ATLANTA (AP) – ATLANTA (AP) – A treatment that helps the immune system fight is shown in the future.

The Treatment, called CAR-T therapy, involves genetically modifying some of a patient's own cells to help them recognize and attack cancer. Richard Carlstrand of Long Key, Florida, had more than a year ago for mesothelioma, an aggressive cancer of the lung.

"We were going into unknown territories" to try this, he said, but now he shows

The first CAR-T therapies were approved in 2017.

The first CAR-T therapies were approved in 2017 for some leukemias and lymphomas. IV, which puts them right where the cancer is – in the blood.

But this approach does not work well if the cells have to

"Solid tumors are notorious for not letting the immune cells enter," and not enough may make it to have an effect, said Prasad Adusumilli of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York.

[0005] [0005] 19659009] Adusumilli has developed a new CAR-T to try to treat and treat cancer patients who have had cancer and other diseases. About 150,000 patients in the U.S. each year face this situation.

The modified cells were injected directly into the chest where the tumors were.

After the therapy, one patient has to undergo surgery and radiation, and is doing well 20 months later with no further treatment. Fifteen others were well enough to start a drug that boosts the immune system in a different way.

Eleven of the 15 have been studied long enough to report results. Two had signs of cancer disappear for about a year, although one later relapsed. Six saw their tumors shrink.

There were no severe side effects despite some patients having had low blood count and fatigue.

Grants from the Federal Government and foundations paid for the work and a larger study is planned. Sloan Kettering has received the treatment for atara biotherapeutics and may be receiving payments from it.

CAR-T therapy in 10 children and adults with advanced sarcomas – cancers that originate in various soft tissues or bones. Unlike other CAR-Ts that are usually given just once, this one was given multiple times, up to 15 in one patient's case.

"From a single blood draw we make a large amount of the CAR-T cells and then we freeze them "and give them through to IV as needed, said dr. Shoba Navai of Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.

Two of the 10 patients have disappeared, one for 17 months and the other for nearly three years, so far. Three others had stabilized their disease. Five worsened despite treatment.

Side effects were similar to the other study. The therapy seems safe, "Navai said.

Several foundations and charities paid for the work.

" These studies are not yet published "with CAR-T therapies, said Dr. Louis Weiner, director of the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center and one of the conference leaders. It may hold promise for some cancers of the stomach, breast, colon, lung and other areas, he said.

Cost is a big issue – current CAR-T therapies are around $ 400,000 but can not be made more than that in research centers.


Marilynn Marchione can be followed at http://twitter.com/MMarchioneAP

The Associated The Press Health & Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

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