• A comprehensive, neutral analysis of the global cancer cell therapy landscape

• 753 cancer cell therapies in the global development pipeline, with 375 in clinical studies

• 350 new cancer cell therapies have entered the global development pipeline since Sep. 2017, an 87% increase in less than 7 months

• 113 targets are being pursued in 7 different classes of cell therapies

Newswise — NEW YORK, May 25, 2018—The Cancer Research Institute (CRI) announced today the publication of a report that provides a comprehensive, independent analysis of the global landscape of cancer cell therapies, including all agents from preclinical to post-market stages. This report provides a quantitative and current overview of the cancer cell therapy field, reveals the unparalleled speed of the field’s expansion, highlights exciting innovations in the development pipeline, and advises strategies to advance the field as a whole.

The report, titled “The Global Landscape of Cancer Cell Therapy,” appeared online today in Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, a premium journal from Nature Publishing Group and an authoritative source of information in drug discovery and development. This report, which expands on CRI’s previously published landscape analysis of the entire field of immuno-oncology, highlights the geographic distribution of cancer cell therapies worldwide and identifies the dominant presence of CAR T therapies in the cancer cell therapy space.

“The quantitative analyses from this report reveal unprecedented enthusiasm and innovation in the global cell therapy pipeline,” said Jill O’Donnell-Tormey, Ph.D., chief executive officer and director of scientific affairs at the Cancer Research Institute.

“In addition to traditional powerhouses of drug development such as the United States or European countries, many other countries, especially China, have significant presence in this space,” noted Jun Tang, Ph.D., a senior research analyst for the CRI Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator program and first author on the report.

The Cancer Research Institute has created an interactive online dashboard based on this report and made it available on the CRI website. Based on conversations with leading cell therapy experts, the report recommends that the field (1) considers adoption of master protocols for clinical trials to better utilize the limited sources of patient volunteers and increase trial efficiencies, (2) clinically evaluates new genetic modification technologies, and (3) keeps pace with the shift in efforts from hematologic cancers to solid tumors.

“Academic institutions are leading the development of many cancer cell therapies, not only in preclinical phases, but also in clinical phases,” said Tang. “It is exciting to see academia moving innovative cell 

therapies further down the pipeline, but many centers may face challenges associated with running complicated cell therapy clinical trials and securing funding to support them,” added Tang.

“CRI’s Clinical Accelerator program creates an independent space where philanthropic funding and clinical trial operation support facilitate the testing of agents from multiple companies in early phase, proof-of-concept clinical studies,” said Vanessa Hubbard-Lucey, Ph.D., associate director of the CRI Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator program. “Those studies are carried out by the leading cancer immunotherapy experts across multiple academic centers, positioning our organization as an ideal third-party partner to harness the expanding innovation in this space,” added Hubbard-Lucey.

To access the interactive dashboard of the report, visit the CRI website at cancerresearch.org/io-cell-therapy. 


Tang J. et al. Global landscape of cancer cell therapy. Nature Reviews Drug Discovery. 25 May 2018. doi:10.1038/nrd.2018.74

About the Cancer Research Institute
The Cancer Research Institute (CRI), established in 1953, is the world’s leading nonprofit organization dedicated exclusively to transforming cancer patient care by advancing scientific efforts to develop new and effective immune system-based strategies to prevent, diagnose, treat, and eventually cure all cancers. Guided by a world-renowned Scientific Advisory Council that includes three Nobel laureates and 26 members of the National Academy of Sciences, CRI has invested $360 million in support of research conducted by immunologists and tumor immunologists at the world’s leading medical centers and universities, and has contributed to many of the key scientific advances that demonstrate the potential for immunotherapy to change the face of cancer treatment. To learn more, go to cancerresearch.org

About the Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator

CRI’s clinical program, the CRI Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator, is a unique academia-nonprofit-industry collaboration model that serves as an “incubator” that delivers multi-center clinical trials for promising new immunotherapy combinations. CRI’s venture philanthropy fund supports clinical trials within this program, which fosters a collaborative environment that enables scientists to advance their most ambitious research ideas, and accelerates studies that one group or company could not do alone. To learn more about the CRI Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator, go to cancerresearch.org/clinical-accelerator.  

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Journal Link: Tang J. et al. Global landscape of cancer cell therapy. Nature Reviews Drug Discovery. 25 May 2018. doi:10.1038/nrd.2018.74