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Exploring Durable Responses With Liso-Cel for Relapsed/Refractory CLL

Matthew S. Davids, MD, MMSc
Published Online:4:08 PM, Tue June 11, 2019

Matthew S. Davids, MD, MMSc, associate director, Center for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and assistant professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School, discusses the significance of the findings from TRANSCEND CLL 004, a phase I/II trial investigating the chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy lisocabtagene maraleucel (liso-cel; JCAR017) in patients with relapsed or refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

All patients were post-ibrutinib (Imbruvica), and many of the patients were also post-venetoclax (Venclexta). According to Davids, this is a very refractory patient population with CLL. Overall, 45% of patients achieved a complete remission while about three-quarters of the patients achieved minimal residual disease undetectability when treated with liso-cel.

More severe adverse events, such as cytokine release syndrome or neurologic events in particular, were observed less frequently with liso-cel as compared to other CAR products that have been tested in this patient population. 

These responses have been deep and durable so far; however, the follow-up for these data has been relatively short. Davids notes that some of the responders are getting out passed the 1-year mark. This shows that this liso-cel may be a very promising therapeutic option for patients with relapsed/refractory CLL. 
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