SEATTLE, Dec. 8, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA) has been selected as the only center in the Northwest (and one of the first centers in the U.S.) to currently offer axicabtagene ciloleucel (axi-cel, also known by the brand name Yescarta™), a new immunotherapy, developed by Kite (a Gilead company), to help treat adults living with relapsed or refractory large B-cell lymphoma after two or more lines of systemic therapy.
This new engineered CAR T-cell therapy harnesses the power of a patient's own immune system to target and attack cancer cells. Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (NHL) is a type of blood cancer that includes multiple subtypes, all of which originate in a patient's lymphatic system. The American Cancer Society estimates that 72,240 people will be diagnosed with aggressive NHL this year, and that 20,140 will die from it.
"We are honored to be selected as a certified treatment center for this promising immunotherapy," said Dr. Nancy Davidson, executive director and president of Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. "Our staff has worked incredibly hard to develop the skillset required to provide such treatments, and we have great hope for what this new treatment means for patients living with NHL."
"About 60 percent of all NHL cases are classified as aggressive, meaning they are fast growing and often difficult to treat," said Dr. Davidson. "Axi-cel will provide us with a whole new treatment for NHL that we believe holds tremendous promise." More information on the effectiveness of axi-cel is available in Kite's press release.
SCCA is among the top ranked cancer treatment hospitals in the country (in the top five, according to U.S. News and World Report's most recent ranking), with a history steeped in scientific research protocols and above-average outcomes for cancer patients.
"The FDA's first approval of a CAR T-cell therapy was for pediatric patients and young adults with a different type of blood cancer and while it is a major advance it impacted a relatively small number of patients," Said Dr. David Maloney, medical director of the Bezos Family Immunotherapy Clinic at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and medical director of cellular immunotherapy at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, SCCA's research partner. "The agency's approval of this new therapy will likely help save thousands of lives over the next few years."
SCCA's leadership in immunotherapy has helped to create new treatments for patients with leukemia, lymphoma and numerous other cancers. Patients at SCCA have had access to a broad range of investigational treatments in clinical trials at SCCA, and these trials have led to treatments that have since become more broadly available. "Access at SCCA to novel treatments like axi-cel CAR T-cell therapy represents a major step forward in the evolution of cancer care," said Dr. Maloney. "It also demonstrates SCCA's leadership in the fight against cancer, and we're proud to be able to offer this promising new cancer treatment to our patients today." For more information visit SCCA's FAQ on axi-cel.
Seattle Cancer Care Alliance brings together the leading research teams and cancer specialists from Fred Hutch, Seattle Children's, and UW Medicine. One extraordinary group whose sole purpose is the pursuit of better, longer, richer lives of our patients. Based in Seattle's South Lake Union region, SCCA has six clinical care sites, including a medical oncology clinic at EvergreenHealth in Kirkland, Washington; medical and radiation oncology at UW Medicine/Northwest Hospital & Medical Center in Seattle, Washington, as well as network affiliation with hospitals in five states. For more information about SCCA, visit www.seattlecca.org.
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SOURCE Seattle Cancer Care Alliance