Half of lymphoma patients alive three years after Gilead cell therapy treatment: study

(Reuters) – Nearly half of lymphoma patients treated with Gilead Sciences Inc’s Yescarta were alive at least three years after a one-time infusion of the CAR-T cell therapy, according to data presented on Saturday.

Out of 101 patients teated with Yescarta for an aggressive blood cancer known as refractory large B-cell lymphoma in the study, 47 were still alive at least three years later, the data presented at the American Society of Hematology meeting in Orlando showed.

“We are delivering towards our goal of potentially life-saving therapy for many patients who previously faced limited treatment options,” Christi Shaw, chief executive of Gilead’s Kite unit, said in a statement. Gilead bought Kite in 2017 for $12 billion to acquire Yescarta.

Sales of Yescarta, which won U.S. approval in October 2017 and carries a list price of $373,000, were slow to take off due to a range of issues, including high hospital costs and a complicated manufacturing process.

Global sales for the first nine months of 2019 were $334 million. Analysts forecast annual sales reaching $1 billion by 2022 and climbing from there, according to Refinitiv data.

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