Posted on February 7, 2018
We are in the leukemia CAR-T study! We received word yesterday afternoon that the paperwork had been signed, and Kimberly will now officially go down to Stanford. What does this mean? Kimberly's cells that were collected in December will start to be processed on February 13 to recognize proteins on the leukemia surface. Kimberly and Jim will start the long drive to Stanford around February 15th. Kimberly will receive chemo on February 19, 20 and 21 as an outpatient to clear out her remaining T-cells and make room for the new, engineered T-cells. She will then be admitted on the 22nd, and receive her new cells on Friday, February 23rd. She will be an inpatient for about 14 days while they look for an (expected) reaction. Then she will be an outpatient for another 14 days. She will have another bone marrow biopsy on March 22nd, and be done with treatment at Stanford on March 23rd. The next week we will find out if the new CAR-T cells have done their job....we are hoping and praying for no detectable disease!
Kimberly's bone marrow biopsy done at Stanford last week showed 0.15% disease in her bone marrow. She is currently off chemo until she arrives at Stanford, because if she starts again it forces Stanford to do another bone marrow biopsy and re-qualify her. She received an antibiotic infusion yesterday to help prevent her from getting pneumonia. She is feeling pretty good and has color in her face, which is a bit alarming to me since she hasn't had color for 6 months. We are planning on keeping her out of school for the most part until she returns from California, as we don't want to run the risk of her getting sick and jeapordizing her place in the study. I don't have an address yet for them, but we have applied for housing through the Ronald McDonald house. I will post an address as soon as I have one. This is exciting and terrifying all at once, but we truly feel that this is a turning point in treating cancer. Kimberly is a tough kid with a great attitude, and she is more than ready for this challenge. Please keep her in your prayers for strength and a curative response. Thank you for all your support!