Cellular Therapy for Multiple Myeloma

Cellular Therapies at Roswell Park

We offer this cutting-edge treatment for several cancer types.

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Cellular therapy uses living cells instead of drugs to destroy and control cancer cells. Stem cell or bone marrow transplantation is one type of cellular therapy in which the patient receives healthy cells (from themself or a donor) to replace the abnormal, cancerous ones. Another type, 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.

One specific adoptive cell therapy, called chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR T-cell) therapy, is proving beneficial against several cancer types, including some solid tumors, blood cancers — and multiple myeloma.

CAR T-cell therapy for multiple myeloma

Jens Hillengass, MD explains how Abecma works.

One of the latest CAR-T therapies — Abecma™ — is now FDA-approved for the treatment of multiple myeloma. Roswell Park is the only authorized provider of Abecma in the region.

In this treatment, your immune system’s healthy cancer-killing T cells are collected through apheresis, a procedure that’s very much like donating blood. The cells are re-engineered in a laboratory, where they are “taught” to attack a certain protein (antigen) that’s found on the surface of the myeloma cells — the protein called B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA). Then the T-cells are multiplied until there are millions of them and returned to your body through a one-time intravenous (IV) infusion.

Learn More About Abecma