CAR T-Cell Therapy: Great Results, Major Toxicities

CAR T-cell therapy is producing durable responses in many subgroups of patients. However, the treatment could also come with some major adverse events.

CAR T-cell therapy is changing the treatment landscape for patients with blood cancers, inducing durable responses in patients with lymphoma who did not respond to chemotherapy, explained Frederick Locke, MD.

Locke is the medical director and research director of the immune cell therapy program, co-program leader of the immunology program, and vice chair in the department of blood and marrow transplant and cellular therapy at the Moffitt Cancer Center.

However, despite the promising responses, CAR T-cell therapy also can come with some serious adverse events (AEs) such as cytokine release syndrome and neurologic toxicities that healthcare providers should be aware of. Providers need to better understand the mechanisms that lead up to these AEs, and learn how to prevent them from becoming severe, Locke said.