Nina Nyugen, MD consults with a patient

Cellular Therapy

Cellular therapy is an innovative treatment that helps your immune system fight cancer.

Cellular therapy has revolutionized cancer care. Various approaches to cellular therapy are used effectively against many types of cancer, particularly blood cancers. Memorial Cancer Institute offers several types of cellular therapy, right here in South Florida.

Memorial partners with Moffitt Cancer Center so that a team of Moffitt doctors and advanced practice providers deliver the highest quality of care right here at Memorial.

What Is Cellular Therapy?

Cellular therapy uses human cells to fight cancer rather than medications, such as chemotherapy. These treatments activate your immune system to attack cancer cells or to repair or replace abnormal cells.

Because they work differently than traditional cancer treatments, cellular therapies have unique side effects. Memorial and Moffitt oncologists and oncology nurses have years of experience identifying and managing these side effects so that you can maintain your treatment regimen. We walk you through the entire process so that you and your family know what to expect.

CAR T Cell Therapy

CAR T Cell Therapy

What Types of Cellular Therapy Are Available at Memorial?

We offer several types of cellular therapy:

  • CAR T-cell therapy: Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy is one of the newest approaches to cellular therapy. It’s approved for use against several blood cancers and is being studied in several solid tumor types. First, we take a blood collection and send it to a specialized laboratory. The lab extracts the T cells (a type of immune system cell) and alters them to recognize and attack cancer cells. Then the engineered T cells are infused back into your body.
  • Engineered T-cell receptor (TCR) therapy: Like CAR T-cell therapy, TCR therapy involves genetically modified T cells. The modifications target specific proteins or antigens on cancer cells and teach the T cells how to latch on to the tumor. TCR is usually “off the shelf” and doesn’t require cell collection from the patient.
  • Stem cell transplant: Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (also called bone marrow transplant is effective in many types of blood cancers. It replaces abnormal cells in your bone marrow with healthy cells. The cells for transplantation can come from your own body (autologous) or a donor (allogeneic).
  • Tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (T-IL) therapy: T-IL therapy takes a tumor sample and collects a certain type of cell from it. They are called tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, an immune cell that recognizes and kills cancer cells. We let those special cells multiply in a lab and inject them back into your body to attack the tumor. Unlike CAR T-cell and TCR therapy, the cells aren’t modified. The effect is enhanced by stimulating the immune system with special immune cell promotors.
  • Natural killer (NK) cell therapy: This therapy is similar to CAR T but uses cells called natural killer cells, which can identify and destroy cancer cells. The cells are altered in a lab to live longer than they normally do so that they can sustain a fight against cancer cells.
Nina Nyugen, MD consults with a patient

Leticia's T Cell Therapy

Returning to Memorial for her immunotherapy, Leticia traveled 3,000 miles from her home in Las Vegas to the team she trusted for CAR T cell therapy.

Cellular Therapy: Why Choose Memorial Cancer Institute?

When you come to Memorial for cellular therapy, you’ll find:

  • Cancer experts: Thanks to our partnership with Moffitt Cancer Center, a team of Moffitt doctors and advanced practice providers at Memorial provide the best therapies for these conditions. Our team includes Moffitt board-certified hematologists and oncologists with additional training and years of experience in cellular therapy.
  • National recognition: Moffitt Cancer Center is accredited by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT), a national organization that sets quality standards. This accreditation ensures that you receive excellent care based on the latest evidence and highest safety standards. Memorial Cancer Institute is also a Transplant Center of Excellence for Cellular Therapy as designated by the National Marrow Donor Program®.
  • Patient- and family-centered care: You and your loved ones are part of the healthcare team. We take time to educate you, answer your questions and make decisions based on your goals and priorities.
  • Holistic treatment: Your team does more than treat cancer. We use integrative medicine therapies to improve your well-being. This holistic approach addresses cancer care as well as your physical, emotional, mental, social and spiritual needs.
  • Clinical trials: Memorial Cancer Institute conducts extensive research to constantly innovate new and better ways to care for our patients. Our clinical trials provide access to advanced treatment options not available everywhere.
Norma's Multiple Myeloma Story

Norma's Multiple Myeloma Story