What Is Cellular Therapy?

Blood or Marrow Transplant (BMT)

A blood or marrow transplant is another type of cellular therapy.

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Cellular therapy uses living cells instead of drugs to destroy and control cancer cells. One researcher describes cellular therapy as using “the cell itself as medicine.

For example, adoptive T-cell transfer, also called adoptive cell therapy, involves collecting cancer-killing T cells (T lymphocytes) from the patient’s blood, multiplying them in the laboratory, and returning them to the patient to jump-start the immune system’s attack against the disease.

Diseases we treat with cellular therapy

Roswell Park is authorized to treat specific types of leukemia and lymphoma with Kymriah® (tisagenlecleucel), Tecartus™ (brexucabtagene autoleucel) and Yescarta®  (axicabtagene ciloleucel), and to treat multiple myeloma with Abecma™ (idecabtagene vicleucel). Cellular therapies may also be available through clinical trials for the treatment of:

  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Metastatic melanoma
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Neuroblastoma and synovial cell carcinoma
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Specific types of solid tumors, including cervical, head & neck, bladder, gastrointestinal, sarcoma and melanoma.

Types of cellular therapy we offer

Learn how Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy works

Our Transplant & Cellular Therapy Center works hand in hand with our Center for Immunotherapy to offer clinical trials of four types of adoptive T-cell transfer (ACT) therapies, including:

  • Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy
  • Tumor-Infiltrating Lymphocyte (TIL) therapy
  • In Vitro Sensitized (IVS) T-cell therapy
  • T-Cell Receptor Therapy

Thanks to our strong research program and pioneering early-phase clinical trials program, we can provide the types of treatments offered only in the nation’s top cancer centers. In 2017 Roswell Park became the first center in the world to use a two-gene combination for adoptive T-cell therapy.

We are also authorized to provide the CAR T-cell therapies Kymriah™ (tisagenlecleucel), Tecartus™ (brexucabtagene autoleucel) and Yescarta™ (axicabtagene ciloleucel), the only FDA-approved cellular therapies. These may be options for patients who are not eligible for blood or marrow transplant, or may serve as a “bridge” to manage the disease until transplant is possible.

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