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CAR-T was the first approved genetic therapy and patients in the early clinical trials agreed to be followed for 15 years to check for any long-term problems.
The approved CAR-T therapies, and most experimental ones, use a virus to insert the genetic code into the patient’s T cells that program them to search and destroy the cancer cells, but it is not completely predictable where the message will be inserted into the DNA.
CAR-T therapy has the most expensive procedure fee ever approved by Medicare and Medicaid, costing much more than what used to be the most expensive, a heart transplant.
Dr. Brian Koffman, a well-known retired doctor, educator, and clinical professor turned patient has dedicated himself to teaching and helping the CLL community since his diagnosis in 2005. He serves as the Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of the CLL Society Inc.
Originally published in The CLL Society Tribune CAR-T Special Edition.