A one-time infusion of an investigational CAR T-cell therapy that targets a protein found on most multiple myeloma cells elicited an 86-percent overall response rate in 21 patients whose disease had come back or had not responded after a median of seven prior treatments, according to results from a Phase I study.
Among 18 patients who received higher, active doses of infused CAR T cells, this response rate increased to 94 percent, with manageable adverse effects, researchers reported. Among these 18 patients, 10 achieved a complete response and 9 of 10 evaluated for minimal residual disease (MRD) using sensitive genetic tests achieved an MRD-negative response. After a median follow-up period of 40 weeks, the median progression-free survival had not been reached; four patients who received active doses had seen their disease get worse.
“We are excited about the early results in a patient population with very advanced myeloma for whom previous therapies have failed,” said senior study author James N. Kochenderfer, MD, of the Center for Cancer Research at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland.