Genetically Modified T Cells Obliterate Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Tumors [video]

Researchers at Penn's Abramson Cancer Center have molecularly engineered T-cells from patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia and achieved an exceptional, unprecedented antitumor response.

In the pilot study of three patients, two achieved complete remission and the third experienced remarkable antitumor response, which was impossible with previously available treatments. The modified T-cells mimic bone marrow transplant (BMT), but without the associated risks.

The result of integration between the research lab and clinic, this study is the first time that researchers have shown that T-cells can function as serial tumor kills. In the pilot study, the modified T-cells eradicated at least 1,000 tumor cells in each patient.

Contrary to other treatments, such as chemotherapy, the modified T-cells are only released into the body once. They persist, divide and continue to kill tumor cells on their own.