Study Highlights the Importance of Infection Prevention After CAR T-Cell Therapy

A recent study published in Nature Medicine underscores the significant risk of infections in patients undergoing CAR T-cell therapy. Researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, along with colleagues from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and LMU Hospital in Munich, analyzed data from 7,604 patients across multiple clinical trials and real-world studies. Their findings highlight the critical need for effective infection prevention strategies in these patients.

Key Findings:

  • Infections as Major Risk: Infections were the leading cause of non-relapse deaths, accounting for 50% of such cases.
  • Other Causes of Mortality: Secondary cancers and cardiovascular or respiratory events followed as the next most common causes, with rates of 7.8% and 7.3%, respectively.
  • Side Effects of CAR T-Cell Therapy: While side effects like cytokine release syndrome and neurotoxicity are well-known, they were not the primary drivers of non-relapse mortality in this study.

This study shifts the focus towards the importance of preventing infections in patients receiving CAR T-cell therapy. It emphasizes the need for comprehensive, evidence-based guidelines to manage infection risks effectively. The findings suggest that infection prevention should be a priority alongside managing therapy-specific side effects to improve patient outcomes.

By highlighting these risks, the study calls for enhanced strategies to protect patients from infections, ensuring they receive the full benefits of CAR T-cell therapy without facing avoidable complications.

Dana Farber Cancer Institute: Study highlights the importance of infection prevention after CAR T-cell therapy