Off-the-Shelf CAR T-Cell Products Show Potential in DLBCL

November 3, 2020
Loretta J. Nastoupil, MD
Loretta J. Nastoupil, MD

Loretta J. Nastoupil, MD, discusses the use of off-the-shelf chimeric antigen receptor T-cell products for the treatment of patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma and other cancers.

Loretta J. Nastoupil, MD, an assistant professor in the Department of Lymphoma/Myeloma at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses the use of off-the-shelf chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell products for the treatment of patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) and other cancers.

Allogeneic CAR T-cell products offer advantages, such as access to more patients in a timelier manner, according to Nastoupil. A healthy donor can give to multiple CAR T-cell products that can be manufactured and stocked. Once a potential patient is identified, those cells are ready to be infused within a 2-week time frame. For a disease that progresses rapidly, this is a big advantage, says Nastoupil.

This type of product is limited because it is still in phase 1 of many trials. Investigators are focused on safety right now and have not tested the safety yet. Some wonder whether these products will induce graft-vs-host disease, which is a unique property of using a donor T cell. Nastoupil thinks that a more important question is whether patients will be able to persist since these are allogeneic cells. If these concerns are shown to be nonissues or something that can be avoided when using CAR T-cell products, then there could be access to many more patients and a better turnaround time, which could potentially lead to better efficacy for patients.