How is Yescarta administered?
Yescarta is given through a catheter placed into your vein (intravenous infusion). The infusion usually takes less than 30 minutes. It is given as a one-time infusion. Yescarta is administered only in a certified healthcare facility.
- After the infusion, you will be monitored where you received your treatment daily for at least 7 days.
- While you may be discharged from the facility, you will need to remain close-by for at least 4 weeks after receiving Yescarta. Your healthcare providers will monitor you for side effects.
- If side effects become serious after discharge, you may need to be readmitted to the facility for monitoring.
Learn More: Important Yescarta warnings and side effects
What did the FDA approve Yescarta for?
Yescarta (axicabtagene ciloleucel), from Kite Pharma and Gilead, is a chimeric antigen receptor T cell (CAR T) therapy used for adults with large B-cell lymphoma or follicular lymphoma (FL) after failing at least two other treatments. Large B-cell lymphoma and follicular lymphoma are two types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
The use for follicular lymphoma is approved under FDA accelerated approval based on response rate. Continued approval for this indication may depend upon the clinical benefit seen in confirmatory trials.
Yescarta is a biologic-type of living drug which is manufactured specifically for each patient from their own white blood cells. The receipt of CAR T-cell therapy is a one-time procedure, and the CAR-T cells may continue to replicate in the body to fight the cancer.
How is Yescarta made?
Here's the general process for CAR T-cell development:
- First, leukapheresis (loo-kah-fur-ee-sis), a procedure to collect the patient's white blood cells (lymphocytes), is performed in the hospital, and then the T-cells are isolated. The T-cells are white blood cells used for immune responses.
- The T-cells are sent to lab where they are genetically engineered to construct a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) on the cell surface. Genes are inserted into the T-cells using an inactive virus which allows the CAR T-cell to recognize, activate, and kill the lymphoma cells.
- The CAR T-cell is grown in the lab for about 2 weeks to greatly increase the dose. The cells are frozen and then sent to the hospital for re-infusion to the patient.
- In the mean time, the patient will receive 3 days of chemotherapy to help lower the white blood cell count and allow the CAR T-cells to be better accepted by the body.
This is not all the information you need to know about Yescarta (axicabtagene ciloleucel) for safe and effective use and does not take the place of talking to your doctor about your treatment. Review the full Yescarta information here, and discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.
- Yescarta (axicabtagene ciloleucel). Product Information. Revosed 3/2021. Kite Pharma, Inc. Santa Monica, CA. Accessed March 22, 2021 at https://www.gilead.com/-/media/files/pdfs/medicines/oncology/yescarta/yescarta-pi.pdf