Meet Yuvan, the first child to receive CAR-T therapy

ALL child receives CAR-T

31th January 2019

Yuvan Thakkar, who has a form of leukaemia, was given the personalised treatment at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), in London, after conventional cancer treatments failed.

CAR-T involves removing immune cells and modifying them in a laboratory so they can recognise cancer cells.

Previously, it was available only as part of a clinical research trial.

The CAR-T therapy, called Kymriah, is licensed to treat patients up to 25 years old with B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL), for whom other treatments have failed.

Yuvan, from Watford, was diagnosed with leukaemia in 2014. He received chemotherapy and then underwent a bone marrow transplant but relapsed after both treatments.

Yuvan's parents, Sapna and Vinay, said: "When Yuvan was diagnosed, it was the most heartbreaking news we had ever received.

"We tried to stay hopeful, as they say leukaemia in children has 90% cure rate, but sadly his illness relapsed.

"This new therapy is our last hope."

Yuvan said: "I really hope I get better soon so I can visit Lego House in Denmark.

"I love Lego and am building a big model Bugatti while I'm in hospital."

Acute Lymphoblastic leukaemia patient receives CAR-T therapy

Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia affects about 600 people a year, mostly children. Most are cured by conventional treatments but about 10% relapse.

In November, it was announced that GOSH, along with Royal Manchester Children's Hospital and Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, would treat children with this rare form of leukaemia.

Up to 30 patients a year are expected to be treated.

Credit: BBC News