6 lupus patients cured by cancer therapy, doctors 'blown away' - Insider

6 lupus patients cured by cancer therapy, doctors 'blown away' - Insider

6 lupus patients cured by cancer therapy, doctors 'blown away' - Insider
Sep 16, 2022 1 min, 8 secs

A group of immunologists based in Erlangen, Germany announced in the journal Nature Medicine on Thursday that all five systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients who they treated with CAR-T cells during an investigational, compassionate use trial were in remission by three months after their treatment, and remained so for at least eight months longer.

Lead researcher Georg Schett told STAT that the treatment outcomes were "miraculous," and the fact that such a therapy course could be used so effectively to combat lupus "blew us away.".

Still, "if you fail on the conventional drugs, and you have severe disease, I think this will be — in the future — the time to intervene with CAR-T cell therapy," Schett explained to Insider, adding that the same strategy could potentially be used to treat other severe autoimmune diseases, including multiple sclerosis. .

Finally, those protein-infused T cells are re-injected into the patient, where they work to kill a target disease (for lupus, the T cells were engineered to fight back against CD19.) .

But, "if you can really wipe out the disease with a single shot of CAR-T cells and have remission for a long time, I think it's not that expensive," Schett said, explaining that in his non-commercial trial doctors spent tens of thousands, not hundreds of thousands, treating every sick patient (they saved on costs by manufacturing their CAR-T cells in house.)

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