CAR-T cell therapy in the UK will be cheaper compared to the US
- 11 September
- Diagnosis & Treatment
The NHS is going to introduce CAR-T cell therapy for blood cancer in children and adolescents. The cost of innovative treatment is planned to be 1.5-2 times cheaper compared to the US.
Today, high-tech immunotherapy is available in leading US cancer centers, but the cost of the course may exceed $1 million for each patient.
Fantastic price is partially explained by the fact that this method is based on the use of modified T-lymphocytes, which "improved" by chimeric antigenic cancer receptors (CAR) in the laboratory.
This engineered molecule recognizes specific targets of malignant cells and activates immune response. We talk about biological drug, which is aimed at the needs of a particular patient. Because of the high cost of collection, storage and processing biomaterials, CAR-T is very expenxive option.
Pharmaceutical manufacturer Novartis, which produces immunotherapeutic drug Kymriah, is preparing an agreement with the NHS to introduce this revolutionary immunotherapy in the UK.
The cost of the treatment is unlikely to exceed $500,000 (instead of $1 million).
According to representatives of the NHS, this step "changes the rules of the game" in the treatment of cancer. Costly treatment is prescribed only to patients who do not respond to other options, including stem cell therapy. Kymriah will be available at leading NHS hospitals, such as Royal Marsden (London).
British children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia will be among the first patients in the world to receive innovative treatment.
There are dozens of children with ALL in the United Kingdom who are candidates for CAR-T cell therapy.
CAR-T cell therapy will replace "chemo"Kymriah is now approved in the UK for the treatment of advanced blood cancer in adults called diffuse B-cell lymphoma. Earlier, a similar Yescarta drug was rejected due to extremely high cost, but in the case of Kymriah, NHS expects Novartis to significantly reduce the price.
Experts believe that in the coming decades personalized cancer immunotherapy will completely replace nonselective and toxic chemotherapy. Modified T-cells kill cancer faster, more accurately and more safely than older cytotoxic agents.
The development of CAR-T cell cancer therapy can be compared with radiotherapy in term of importance for world oncology . This is real revolution that not everyone has realized yet.
Recent clinical studies of CAR-T cell therapy demonstrate an objective response rate of about 80%. It means that 4 out of 5 patients receive an additional chances, additional years of life.
Unfortunately, uncontrolled activity of immune cells is associated with severe complications of immunotherapy. In rare cases, lethal outcomes were registered during trials.
Like any innovative strategy, young and primitive immunotherapy can not be completely safe. Antibiotics, vaccines, and other medical technologies also went a long way.
British oncologists and charitable societies greeted the government's plans with joy and urged to intensify the development of new cancer treatment technologies in the UK.
Cancer Treatment at Royal Marsden NHS TrustIn 1851 Royal Marsden became the first specialized oncological clinic in the world. This unique medical institution, together with the Institute for Cancer Research, remains the largest comprehensive oncology center in the European Union.
Every year, Royal Marsden meets up to 50 thousands of british and foreign patients from around the world, including the United States, being one of the most popular centers of medical tourism in the UK. This is the best evidence of the high achievements and authority.
Other popular cancer centers in the United Kingdom:
⦁ Christie NHS Foundation Trust (Manchester)
⦁ Clutterbridge Cancer Center NHS Foundation Trust (Bebington)
These highly ranked medical institutions use advanced therapeutic and diagnostic technologies, providing foreign patients with modern and effective cancer care.