Keeping Up With CAR-T: The Most Crowded Room at ASH

Posted by Maria Whitman on Dec 9, 2016 11:29:40 AM


Bernadette Bourjolly and Pranav Srivastava contributed to this blog post.

As I rounded the corner in the north tower of the Marriott hotel next to the San Diego Convention Center while attending the American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting this past weekend, I was suddenly met by a sea of bodies straining to see ahead. Many were trying to push through, anxious to be on time for a main session on advances in immunotherapy for acute lymphoblastic leukemia. The ballroom was already full, and the ground staff was working feverishly to acquire an overflow room. One frustrated doctor next to me let out a sigh and said: “You think they would have learned from prior years. The CAR-T sessions need a main hall.” An overflow room opened next to where I was standing and I slipped inside, feeling lucky to grab a seat before the room filled and the process began again, causing many to miss some of the opening abstract presentation.


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Is the CAR-T Upset?

Posted by Pranav Srivastava on Dec 1, 2016 12:38:37 PM

Recently, Juno Therapeutics announced that it’s putting a clinical trial for one of its CAR (chimeric antigen receptor) T-cell therapy candidates (JCAR015) on hold, even though it remains unclear whether the patient deaths in one of its trials were drug related. Following the news, the company’s stock took a beating before Thanksgiving, dropping nearly a quarter of its value. Prior to the two patient deaths—both suffered from swelling of the brain—the broad range of neurotoxicity had been a known challenge with CAR-Ts. With the latest news, we once again are faced with questions: Is this when the shine starts to come off? Are we seeing the reality beyond the hype? 


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When Immunotherapy Doesn't Work

Posted by Nisha Gilra on Jun 8, 2016 12:40:26 PM

The Promise of Immunotherapy and Early Successes

Our immune systems may be one of the most powerful resources that we have in the fight against cancer. With all of the mounting evidence of immunotherapy used to treat melanoma, lung cancer and bladder cancer, immunotherapy as a treatment option is here to stay. But as highlighted on many occasions and again at ASCO [1], immunotherapy doesn’t always work.


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Five Reasons That Positioning Matters in Oncology

Posted by Malik Kaman on May 6, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Many of us in the biopharmaceutical industry marvel at the tidal wave of new treatment options in oncology. This trend should only accelerate with literally hundreds of unique medicines in phase two and phase three trials across a variety of tumor types. But what are the commercial implications of this trend?


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