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FDA-approved CAR T-cell Therapies

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy is a type of immunotherapy that uses a patient’s own genetically modified T cells to find and kill cancer. UPMC Hillman Cancer Center was among the first in the nation to offer the FDA-approved CAR T-cell therapies listed below and is western Pennsylvania’s most experienced provider, having treated more than 100 patients with CAR T cells.

Our therapies include:

ABECMA® (idecabtagene vicleucel)

  • For adult patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma after four or more prior lines of therapy, including an immunomodulatory agent, a proteasome inhibitor, and an antidCD38 monoclonal antibody.

BREYANZI® (lisocabtagene maraleucel)

  • For adult patients with relapsed or refractory large B-cell lymphoma after two or more lines of systemic therapy, including:
    • Diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) not otherwise specified (including DLBCL arising from indolent lymphoma)
    • High-grade B-cell lymphoma
    • Primary mediastinal large B-cell lymphoma
    • Follicular lymphoma grade 3B

CARVYKTITM (ciltacabtagene autoleucel)

  • For patients with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma after four prior lines of therapy.

KYMRIAHTM (tisagenlecleucel)

  • For adults with relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL).
  • For young adult patients up to age 25 with relapsed or refractory acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).

TECARTUSTM (brexucabtagene autoleucel)

  • For patients with relapsed or refractory mantle cell lymphoma.
  • For adult patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL)

YESCARTATM (axicabtagene ciloleucel)

  • For patients with the following conditions that have either not responded to or have relapsed following two or more lines of systemic therapy:
    • Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL)
    • Primary mediastinal B-cell lymphoma
    • High grade B-cell lymphoma
    • DLBCL that results from follicular lymphoma
    • Follicular lymphoma

Patients will undergo an extensive evaluation to determine their eligibility for this highly specialized treatment. To learn more, please call 1-833-876-2227.

What to Expect from CAR T-Cell Therapy

Patients who are approved for CAR T-cell therapy will undergo the following treatment process:

  • Collection: Patients undergo leukapheresis at the Mario Lemieux Center for Blood Cancers at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center. During this process, white blood cells (including T cells) are collected from the patient.
  • Modification: Our team sends the collected cells to the manufacturing laboratory, where they are genetically modified to express chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) on their surface.
  • Multiplication: The genetically modified T cells are grown in the lab, multiplying so they increase in number. The lab freezes the multiplied cells and ships them back to UPMC Hillman Cancer Center; this process takes about 2-3 weeks.
  • Chemotherapy: Patients will receive conditioning chemotherapy a few days prior to their hospital admission for infusion. This therapy improves the ability of the infused CAR T cells to expand and multiply.
  • Infusion and Inpatient Hospitalization: Patients are admitted at UPMC Shadyside and the CAR T cells are infused back into their bloodstream in a single infusion, like a blood transfusion. Patients typically stay in the hospital for 1-2 weeks following infusion so our team can closely monitor them for potential side effects.
  • Recovery: The risk/recovery period following CAR T-cell therapy is usually 2-3 months. During this period, patients must be monitored for side effects and treatment response, which can be severe. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration requires patients treated with CAR T-cell therapy to remain near UPMC Hillman Cancer Center during the initial 30-day acute recovery period.

Contact Us About CAR T-Cell Clinical Trials

Physician Referrals

To refer a patient for evaluation for one of these clinical trials, please call 1-833-876-2227.


If you think you might be a candidate for one of these clinical trials, please call 1-833-876-2227.