A “Game Changer” Comes to Riley
September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and also a time to celebrate a new, groundbreaking pediatric cancer treatment now available at Riley Hospital for Children.
The Riley Cancer Center is beginning to offer patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) a promising new treatment: CAR T-cell therapy. The FDA recently approved this treatment, which modifies patients’ immune T-cells and turns them into “ninja” cells designed to seek and destroy leukemia cells. Trials found that more than 80 percent of patients went into remission within a month of beginning treatment. CAR T-cell therapy also produces fewer toxic side effects than many standard treatments, which can lead to long-term health complications.
Riley Hospital’s Director of Pediatric Stem Cell Transplant, Jodi Skiles, M.D., calls this development a “game changer” for kids who have the toughest cancers.
“This is a true paradigm shift,” says Dr. Skiles. “We can help more children survive, give them better long-term health, and address disparities in health care by making this treatment available to all children who need it, right here in Indiana.”
This development is a huge benefit for patients like 7-year-old Riley Cancer Center patient Riley Osmon from Bedford, Ind. After he had to travel outside of Indiana to receive this therapy, his oldest sister led a fundraising effort through their community and school, Springville Elementary. Their event raised $22,000 in support of Riley Hospital’s efforts to offer CAR T-cell therapy.
#GiveHope at RileyKids.org/Donate
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