HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata Achieves Milestone with a Successful Treatment of Severe Myeloma of a 62-year patient - Songoti

HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata Achieves Milestone with a Successful Treatment of Severe Myeloma of a 62-year patient

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Kolkata: In a notable success of medical expertise, HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata achieved another milestone in the latest CAR T cell gene therapy to successfully treat a virulent type of blood cancer in a 62-year-old female patient. Led by Dr. Joydeep Chakraborty, HOD & Sr. Consultant - Haemato Oncology & BMT, the hospital's Haemato Oncology team showcased unparalleled dedication during the treatment.


In January this year, Maiah (name changed), a 62-year-old patient from Myanmar was referred to HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata by her treating doctor in Myanmar. She was suffering from ‘lambda light myeloma’, a type of blood cancer that develops from the plasma cells in the bone marrow. She had extensive bone tumors that made her bones weak and prone to vertebral fractures, causing debilitating back pain and rendering her bedridden. In addition to this, she had further complications from urosepsis infections of the urinary tract and kidneys making conventional cancer treatment difficult.


Upon the patient’s arrival at HCG Centre, Kolkata, in January, Dr. Joydeep Chakraborty and his oncology team administered a few cycles of a combination therapy regimen (with Daratumumab, Bortezomib, Lenalidomide and Dexamethasone) typically prescribed for newly diagnosed blood cancer. Following this, she underwent CAR T-cell therapy. This is a next-generation personalized treatment approach, due to its potential for better response and tolerability. Notably, the patient received the CD19/BCMA dual CAR T-cell therapy, targeting two specific protein markers on myeloma cells.


Dr.Joydeep Chakraborty, Head & Sr. Consultant of Haemato Oncology & BMT, HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata explains, “Ms. Maiah was admitted to the government hospital in Myanmar where she was being treated for the sepsis infections along with cancer therapy. When her doctor found that she was not responding to the treatment, he referred her to us. She had a known history of diabetes and high blood pressure which made treatment more challenging. Considering all the complexities of her blood cancer, the accompanying complications, and her age, we decided that CAR-T cell therapy was the best mode of care. This therapy is relatively safer compared to a bone marrow transplant. It is highly effective in the treatment of formidable diseases, has less toxicity and thus can be used in elderly patients. The patient tolerated the treatment well, with no Cytokine Release Syndrome (CRS) or Immune Effector Cell-Associated Neurotoxicity Syndrome (ICANS), which are typical potential side effects. Her cancer is in complete remission following the therapy, all her health issues and symptoms have been resolved and she has been discharged, is fully mobile and healthy.”


In CAR-T therapy, (CAR stands for chimeric antigen receptor), the patient’s own immune response is engineered to kill the cancer cells within. First, the patient’s lymphocytes (white blood cells) are collected - similar to how a blood sample is collected. These lymphocytes are then sent to a specialist laboratory where the scientists attach proteins on the surface of the collected lymphocytes, which can specifically identify the cancer cells. These reinforced lymphocytes are then reinfused to the patient’s bloodstream. These lymphocytes circulate and identify the cancer cells. They command the patient’s own immune cells to target and kill these cancer cells without harming the surrounding tissues.


Speaking about her experience at HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata, a visibly emotional and happy  Maiah says, “My family and I had given up the fight for my survival when I started developing sepsis and was bedridden. When the doctor in Myanmar told me about the life-changing therapy available in India at HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata, the proficiency of the oncologists headed by Dr. Joydeep Chakraborty and their high success rate in administering the treatment, I was filled with hope. The doctors at HCG are a godsend and miraculously saved my life. Their expertise and dedication were instrumental in restoring my health and well-being.”


Maiah has since been discharged from the Centre and can walk normally again. The cancer is in complete remission after receiving treatment at HCG Cancer Centre, Kolkata.

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