What is So Incredible about the CAR T-cell Therapy Process?
CAR T-cell treatment is an innovative, high-tech therapy for blood cancer that modifies your white blood cells in a laboratory, engineering them specifically to target and destroy cancer cells. Before returning these transformed cells to your body, they are given time to multiply in the lab until there are millions of them. Then, once the modified T-cells are infused into the body, they continue to grow and divide – which means that only one CAR T-cell treatment is needed for the killer cells to actively attack the cancer for months, or even years.
In cases where all other blood cancer treatments have failed, CAR T-cell therapy has succeeded in putting some people’s cancers into remission.
How the CAR T-cell Therapy Process Creates Hunter-Killer Cells Against Cancer
Advanced technology is used to separate T-cells, a type of white blood cells that comprise your immune system, from the rest of your blood cells. In a highly specialized laboratory, these cells are transformed to produce chimeric antigen receptors – CARs – on their surface. The new, specially designed CAR T-cells are able to find and attach to the coordinating antigen on tumor cells in order to kill them.
As a state-of-the-art procedure, CAR T-cell treatment is only available at a handful of cancer centers worldwide. Sheba Medical Center in Israel offers this revolutionary personalized cancer therapy, with all the necessary laboratories and progressive facilities located conveniently on campus.
Basic Steps of the CAR T-cell Therapy Process
- Eligibility Assessment: We will perform various tests and screenings at Sheba to evaluate if this treatment is right for you.
- T-cell Collection: A special machine for apheresis will be used to separate T-cells from the rest of your blood cells.
- Cell Engineering: Your T-cells will be engineered in a lab to produce CARs on their surface.
- Growing T-cells: Over the span of a few weeks, the modified T-cells will multiply in our on-site laboratory.
- Chemotherapy: Before we infuse the CAR T-cells into your body, we may administer chemotherapy to kill additional cancer cells in advance.
- T-cell Infusion: This is similar to a blood transfusion.
- Recovery: Hospitalization may be necessary for a few weeks so our doctors can closely monitor your condition and manage any side effects, as needed. Typically, it takes about two to three months to recover.
- Follow-up: You will return periodically over the next few months for follow-up appointments. Over the next several years, you will return for blood tests, physical examinations, and/or bone marrow biopsies and PET or CT scans.
Types of Cancer CAR-T Therapy Can Treat
At the Hemato-Oncology Division of Sheba Medical Center in Israel, we offer CAR T-cell treatment for the following types of blood cancer:
Advantages of the CAR T-Cell Therapy Process in Israel
Sheba Medical Center was the first hospital to pioneer this innovative treatment outside of the United States, led by the hospital’s Hemato-Oncology Department and the Ella Lemelbaum Institute for Immuno-Oncology, and fully accredited for international healthcare by the Joint Commission International (JCI).
The benefits of CAR T-cell at Sheba include affordable fees, convenient all-inclusive care, treatment provided by world-renowned cancer specialists, and a holistic, patient-friendly approach to medicine. A coordinator from Sheba’s International Medical Tourism Division will assist with everything throughout your treatment program, from travel to translation.