CAR T-Cell Therapy at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center

UPMC Hillman Cancer Center is the only center in western Pennsylvania to offer chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy, a type of immunotherapy that uses a patient’s own genetically modified T cells to find and kill cancer cells. In addition to FDA-approved therapies, we offer several ongoing clinical trials utilizing CAR T-cell therapy.

What is CAR T-Cell Therapy?

T cells are a type of white blood cell that can fight infection and disease. When a T cell recognizes something as a threat – like a cell infected by a virus – it attacks and destroys it to help keep the body healthy. The goal of CAR T-cell therapy is to direct T cells to cancer cells instead of cells that are infected.

During CAR T-cell therapy, a patient’s own T cells are extracted and genetically modified to express a chimeric antigen receptor, or CAR, that recognizes a protein on the surface of the cancer cells. Once the cells are modified, they’re also multiplied to increase in number over the course of two to three weeks.

The modified T cells are then infused back into the patient, where they will hopefully identify and destroy cancer cells. Because CAR T-cell therapy can cause serious side effects, patients remain in the hospital for one to two weeks following the infusion for monitoring.

CAR-T Cell Therapy | Blood Cancer

FDA-Approved Therapy

UPMC Hillman Cancer Center offers the FDA-approved therapies YESCARTA™ (axicabtagene ciloleucel) and KYMRIAH™ (tisagenlecleucel).

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CAR T-Cell Therapy Clinical Trials at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center

Research and Clinical Trials

UPMC Hillman Cancer Center is currently enrolling patients in CAR T-cell therapy clinical trials.

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