ODAC recommends approval of CTL019 in rel/ref ALL



CTL019 preparation
Photo from Penn Medicine
The US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee (ODAC) has unanimously recommended approval for the chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy CTL019 (tisagenlecleucel). The committee voted 10 to 0 in favor of approving CTL019 for the treatment of pediatric and young adult patients... [Read Article]

T-cell product improves outcomes of haplo-HSCT



HSCT preparation
Photo by Chad McNeeley
Preliminary results of a phase 1/2 study suggest the T-cell product BPX-501 lowers the risks associated with haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplant (haplo-HSCT). In this ongoing study, researchers are testing BPX-501 in pediatric patients undergoing haplo-HSCT to treat a range of hematologic disorders. Patients treated thus far... [Read Article]

CSF p-Tau predicts neurocognitive sequelae in survivors of childhood cancer



Neuropsychology exam
Photo courtesy of
Columbia University
A small retrospective study of survivors of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) or non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) has found that phosphorylated Tau (p-Tau) in patients’ cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is a predictor of late neurocognitive consequences. Investigators compared intellectual performance, memory, and executive functioning between survivors and control subjects and... [Read Article]

Ferrous sulfate bests iron complex in treating IDA in infants, young kids



Ferrous sulfate drops
A trial comparing ferrous sulfate with iron polysaccharide complex to treat infants and young children with nutritional iron-deficiency anemia (IDA) has shown ferrous sulfate to be more effective at raising hemoglobin levels in this population, according to researchers. Dozens of oral iron supplements exist for IDA treatment, ferrous sulfate being the most... [Read Article]

Dasatinib potentially a new SOC for children with CML-CP, study author suggests



Child with cancer
Photo by Bill Branson
The largest ongoing and prospective trial of pediatric patients with chronic myeloid leukemia in chronic phase (CML-CP), according to the best knowledge of the investigators, has found dasatinib to be safe and effective as first- or second-line therapy for these children. Patients refractory to or intolerant of imatinib... [Read Article]

Pembrolizumab enhances CAR T-cell persistence in relapsed ALL



McCormick Place during
ASCO 2017 Annual Meeting
Photo © ASCO/Danny Morton 2017
Three of 6 pediatric patients with relapsed or refractory acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) whose CD19 chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells did not persist even after reinfusion demonstrated persistence when the PD-1 checkpoint inhibitor pembrolizumab was added to the regimen. CAR T... [Read Article]

CAR T cells elicit durable, potent responses in kids with EM relapse of ALL



CTL019 preparation
Photo from Penn Medicine
Outcomes for pediatric patients with relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) are dismal, with the probability of event-free survival ranging from 15% to 70% after a first relapse to 15% to 20% after a second relapse. “So novel therapies are obviously urgently needed,” Mala Kiran Talekar, MD, of the... [Read Article]