Freemasons New Zealand is proud to announce a further $600,000 dollar contribution to the Malaghan Institute of Medical Research over three years, in addition to the $600,000 already provided previously, making a total of $1.2 million over five years. The donation will help Malaghan carry out clinical trials on CAR T-cell therapy, a means of treating several types of blood cancer.
CAR T-cell therapy is a form of treatment that involves taking blood from the patient’s body and reprogramming specific cells to recognise cancer. The process itself takes about 21 days to complete and ends with the treated blood being injected back into the patient.
“We hope that bringing this new type of treatment to New Zealand in a clinical trial can accelerate the adoption of other CAR T-cell therapies for all New Zealanders.”
Human immunology lab Clinical Director, Dr Robert Weinkove, says CAR T-cells are an emerging type of treatment for cancer, and their potential is only just beginning to be understood.
“By re-programming immune cells, we can fight cancer in more precise and targeted ways in situations where existing treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiation are no longer an option,” Dr Weinkove says.