The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has granted CellProtect orphan drug designation for the treatment of Multiple Myeloma (MM). CellProtect technology is owned by CellProtect Nordic Pharmaceuticals AB (CPNP), and is, in essence, a process by which a patient's own natural killer (NK) cells are removed, activated, and expanded in-vitro. The activated cells, with enhanced immunocompetence, are then transferred back into the patient, enabling more effective killing of tumor cells.
This therapy is being tested in phase I/II clinical trials with MM patients that are being carried out at the Karolinska University Hospital in Sweden, as a supplementary treatment to Autologous Stem Cell Transplant (ASCT). To date, initial results from these trials have been promising, showing a good safety profile and effective outcomes, with the full results due to be published in 2018. This will be welcome news for MM patients who will be hoping to see effective cell therapies move closer to the clinic.