Seattle Children’s Patient Has Positive Response to New Cancer Treatment

Released: 11-Jul-2013 3:00 PM EDT
Source Newsroom: Seattle Children's Hospital
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Newswise — The first patient in a cellular immunotherapy Phase 1 cancer trial at Seattle Children’s has had a positive response to T-cell therapy. The 23-year-old patient, Lynsie Conradi, from Bellingham, Wash. received the welcome news yesterday. Conradi signed up for the study after experiencing a second relapse of leukemia earlier this year.

The new treatment involves drawing blood from the patient, reprogramming their infection-fighting T-cells to find and destroy cancer cells, and infusing the blood back into their body.

“Results show that Lynsie has had a positive response to the T-cell therapy and, at this time, we do not detect any leukemia cells,” said Rebecca Gardner, MD, principal investigator for the clinical trial.

The next step for Lynsie is a stem cell transplant, with the aim of clearing the cancer from her body. The goal of the immunotherapy cancer trial was to get her to this stage.

“T-cell therapy will change the way we treat cancer,” said Donna Rainford, Lynsie’s mother. “Watching Lyns suffer from the effects of chemo almost two weeks after it’s all done makes me thankful that it will soon be a thing of the past. Bring on those T-cells as part of the normal protocol for other cancer patients!”

The work being done in the lab and research-related patient care costs for this Phase 1 trial are being funded through philanthropy, which has become increasingly important. Money raised by Ben Towne Foundation is now covering 80 percent of research staff salaries and research materials for clinical trial development at Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research.

Further private support can accelerate our goal of eliminating the scourge of childhood cancer.

Seattle Children’s is currently enrolling patients 18 to 26 years old for the immunotherapy study. Patients admitted into the trial will have experienced relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukemia, are responding poorly to chemotherapy regimens and have a less than 20 percent chance of survival. We expect to open the trial to include adults and patients between the ages of 1 and 26 within the next year. For questions about the immunotherapy cancer trial, contact Seattle Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center at 206-987-2106 or, toll-free, 866-987-2000.

Learn more:
Dr. Michael Jensen: A World without Childhood Cancer (video)
Ben Towne Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation (video)
Treating Childhood Leukemia without Chemotherapy or Radiation
High-resolution photos: T-cells in action; Dr. Rebecca Gardner; Dr. Michael Jensen; Carin & Jeff Towne http://www.flickr.com/photos/38997016@N03/sets/72157634580463715/

If you’d like to arrange an interview with Dr. Gardner, please contact Seattle Children’s PR team at 206-987-4500 or at press@seattlechildrens.org


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