Just a few days ago the FDA panel recommended that the agency approves a treatment that will genetically alter a patient’s own cells in order to fight leukemia. If this makes it all the way through it will be the very first treatment of this kind.
This treatment is known as CTL019 and is one of many on the well. Several other gene altering treatments are being developed currently for things like myeloma as well as brain tumors.
12-Year-old Emily Whitehead was among those attending the panel’s meeting and she was the first patient from the trials of this gene altering treatment. Her leukemia was considered fatal and she almost died, since she has been treated with this new treatment she is cancer free. Her father believes that if this treatment is approved it will save thousands of children if not more.
This treatment was developed by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania it is said to be especially for the 15 percent of patients who do not respond to traditional treatment or those who experience relapses. If approved initially the treatment itself will be limited to use because of how complex the process is and because when it comes to managing side effects the patient must be in expert care.
Only about 30 or so medical facilities will have access to it once it is released. For more on this please check out the video below. This is something filled with controversy that no one will ever be able to fully agree or disagree on. What do you think about this?