Swiss pharmaceutical company Lonza’s Cocoon platform was recently installed at Sheba Medical Center. Now, for the first time ever, Sheba used CAR T-cells produced by the automated system as part of a clinical trial.
The groundbreaking technology of the Cocoon platform allows the patient’s immune cells to be genetically engineered on-site, at the same facility where the personalized therapy is given. This efficient system truly reflects the medicine of the future.
The Ministry of Health approved the use of the treatment as part of a clinical trial, and the European Union has already granted it the CE standard. Later this year, more patients are expected to participate in the cutting-edge trial at Sheba.
At present, Sheba is the only medical center in Israel with the capability to produce T-cells on its own. In the last two years, more than 150 oncology patients have been treated with CAR T-cell therapy at Sheba. Through the use of genetic engineering, this advanced therapy reprograms the patient’s immune system to fight malignant cells.
By enabling the mass production of T-cells, the application of Cocoon technology will lead the field of immunotherapy to new heights at Sheba. It will significantly reduce the cost of treatments, streamlining the time, workspace and human resources needed to provide CAR T-cell therapy.
“The world of health is advancing towards customized medicine,” said Prof. Dror Harats, Head of the Research Authority at Sheba Medical Center. “As one of the world’s leading medical centers, Sheba is leading the field of research and development, integrating the most advanced technologies in the world for our patients and saving lives.”