Bluebird's BCMA CAR-T Sings At ASCO, But How Will It Fly In Early Multiple Myeloma?
Bluebird and Celgene are focused on moving bb2121 into earlier lines of multiple myeloma therapy. Positive early data was was the opening headliner at ASCO, showing PFS improvements of about a year in heavily pre-treated patients – meeting expectations, though not overwhelming.
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Cilta-cel maintained high response rates in longer-term multiple myeloma data, but ide-cel causes less cytokine release syndrome and severe neurotoxicity – and it has a March decision date at the US FDA.
Management outlined four new oncology and one rare disease program during an analyst day. CEO Nick Leschly also talked to Scrip about staying focused on R&D as other gene therapy players get bought out.
Celgene's lead program will be the third autologous CD19-targeting T-cell therapy on the market, but the company is in the lead among BCMA-targeting CAR-T candidates. Next-generation technologies are also on the way.