Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Promising T-cell Therapy for Leukemia and other cancers - Event May 30

There is an exciting buzz about a new "serial killer" T-cell therapy for acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and CLL. T cells, which are part of your immune system, are taken out of patients' blood; are genetically modified with a virus; put back into the patient with leukemia; and the "killer" T-cells hunt for cancer cells, and kill them. Two years ago, researchers at the University of Penn. reported that a small study showed astounding results. Patients who had no other alternative were given this treatment, and went into remission. Other medical centres have been testing similar methods since, and the results are showing promising results.

While this new therapy is in its infancy stage, it could potentially treat leukemia, and make transplants unnecessary, and also treat other forms of cancer.

On May 30, 2013, the Newfoundland & Labrador Thrombosis, Blood and Immune Disorders Research and Education Project will host an event with keynote speaker Dr. Kevin Curran, of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York city. Dr. Curran is one of the researchers in this new treatment. This presentation is open to the public, and should be very interesting for anyone in the community and among health care workers. See details below, and see links to web sites which describe the T-cell therapy which Dr. Curran is involved in.

Links on T-cell Immunotherapy

NY Times Article

ABC News Story§ion=1206835&playlist=1363742

Washington Post Article

Adoptive T cell Therapy for Cancer- How your Immune System Can Cure Cancer

Keynote Speakers:
Dr. Kevin J. Curran, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center NY< NY
Dr. Paul Moorehead, Faculty of Medicine at MUN
Holly King and Charlie Cheeseman, patient and family advocates

Date: Thurs., May 30, 2013 Time: 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm Location: GEO Centre, St. John's

Description: This is an exciting and promising leukemia/cancer therapy news event. Topics include leukemia, childhood leukemia and a promising new immunotherapy that is exciting the medical community the U.S., Canada and elsewhere. We will hear from Dr. Kevin Curran, a pediatric oncologist who is a member of a large research team, and working at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Clinic, New York. Dr. Curran is the principal investigator for a study using this treatment for children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) . This treatment has so far been used successfully with patients with ALL and CLL. Clinical trials are opening for other types of cancer and other conditions currently managed by stem cell or bone marrow transplantation. The hope is that this treatment will be more effective and less toxic than stem cell or bone marrow transplantation.

6.30 Refreshments
7.00 Introduction Dr. MF Scully and Dr. M. Larijani, Faculty of Medicine at MUN
7.10 A patient and family perspective
Holly King and Charlie Cheeseman, NLTBI Volunteers
7.30 Acute Leukemia in Children, Dr. Paul Moorehead, Faculty of Medicine at MUN
7.50 Question and Answer period
8.00 Adoptive T cell therapy for cancer -How Your Immune System Can Cure Cancer
Kevin J. Curran MD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center NY, NY
8.40 Questions and Answer period
8.50 Panel Discussion
9.00 Refreshments