Read More: RT America
The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first-ever gene therapy to treat cancer in the US. The treatment offers a totally new approach to fighting the disease and could lead to novel treatments of other serious and life-threatening maladies. On Wednesday, the FDA approved a new leukemia treatment from the Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis, which the agency said is “the first gene therapy available in the United States.” The treatment, called Kymriah, is a “genetically-modified autologous T-cell immunotherapy,” where each dose is created by using the patient’s own T-cells, a type of white blood cell known as a lymphocyte. Each patient’s T-cells are sent to a manufacturing center where they are genetically modified to include a new gene that contains a specific protein, called a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR). The CAR-T cells known as “a living drug,” are then infused back into the patient, where they target and kill leukemia cells.