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Challenges Impacting Treatment of Cutaneous and Peripheral T-Cell Lymphomas

Basem William, MD
Published Online:6:37 PM, Tue November 5, 2019

Basem William, MD, associate professor of internal medicine, The Ohio State University, discusses challenges in treating patients with cutaneous and peripheral T-cell lymphomas, as well as the challenges in conducting clinical trials in this patient population.

The biggest challenge in these patients is that the disease is very rare, says William. It also presents as a very heterogenous disease. This makes it challenging to conduct a clinical trial at a single institution or only a few centers. Multi-institution, international collaborations are essential to conducting a clinical trial in these patients, but that collaboration can be challenging.

William says that these diseases act very aggressively, and the patients tend to be older with poor performance statuses. In these cases, patients do not have the luxury of time for longer screening periods to get placed in a clinical trial.

Additionally, William notes that there are no good surface markers in cutaneous or peripheral T-cell lymphomas that are unique to the cancer cells. This impacts the development of cellular therapy as well as other immunotherapy treatments.
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