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A Novel Method to Prevent CAR T-cell-induced Cytokine Storm

An early intervention method to prevent or reduce cytokine release syndrome associated with CAR T cell therapy

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Technology overview

Cytokine release syndrome (CRS) is a potentially life-threatening toxicity that affects a large majority of patients treated with CAR T cell therapy. CRS occurs due to high level of immune activation and is characterized by elevated levels of circulating cytokines including IL-6 and IFN-γ. IL-6 receptor targeting antibodies, including the FDA approved Tocilizumab, have been used to treat patients that exhibit signs of severe CRS. However, many patients are refractory and require additional treatments. Dr. Michael Jensen and Dr. Rebecca Gardner have developed methods to treat patients prior to the emergence of CRS. They preemptively treated patients receiving CAR T cell therapy with combination regimens of Tocilizumab and steroids. Early intervention reduced severe CRS by 50%, while still maintaining a high minimum residual disease (MRD) negative complete remission rate in these patients. The efficacy of CAR T cell therapy was not affected, and no adverse effects on CAR T cell engraftment, expansion or persistence were observed. This represents a novel approach to prevent CRS in patients receiving CAR T cell therapy.


  • Treatment for adoptive T cell transfer associated toxicities
  • Preemptive treatment to prevent cytokine release syndrome


  • Low toxicity and high efficacy of CAR T-cell therapy
  • Immunomodulation with high efficacy of CAR T cell therapy

Market overview

CRS affects 50% to 100% of patients treated with CAR T cell therapy. 13% to 48% of patients experiencing CRS experience the severe or life-threatening form. The global CAR T-cell therapy market was valued at $467 million in 2018 and is expected to reach $2.9 billion by 2023, growing at a CAGR of 44.1%.


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Technology status


Patent status

National stage filings based on WO 2017/165571


Michael Jensen, MD

Learn more

To learn more about this technology, please email Kamya Rajaram.

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