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Respiratory infections predominate after day 100 following B-cell maturation antigen-directed CAR T-cell therapy

Published date

September 26, 2023


"Infections are an important complication after B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA)-directed chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy and risks may differ between the early and late periods. We evaluated infections in 99 adults who received a first BCMA-directed CAR T-cell therapy (commercial and investigational autologous BCMA CAR T-cell products at the recommended phase 2 dose) for relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma between November 2016 and May 2022. Infections were recorded until day 365, if patients experienced symptoms with a microbiologic diagnosis, or for symptomatic site-specific infections treated with antimicrobials. One-year cumulative incidence functions were calculated based on time to first respiratory infection using dates of infection-free death and receipt of additional antineoplastic therapies as competing risks. Secondary analysis evaluated risk factors for late respiratory infections using univariate and multivariable Cox regression models. Thirty-seven patients (37%) experienced 64 infectious events over the first year after BCMA-directed CAR T-cell therapy, with 42 early infectious events (days, 0-100), and 22 late infectious events (days, 101-365). Respiratory infections were the most common site-specific infection and the relative proportion of respiratory infections increased in the late period (31% of early events vs 77% of late events). On multivariable analysis, hypogammaglobulinemia (hazard ratio [HR], 6.06; P = .044) and diagnosis of an early respiratory viral infection (HR, 2.95; P = .048) were independent risk factors for late respiratory infection. Respiratory infections predominate after BCMA CAR T-cell therapy, particularly after day 100. Hypogammaglobulinemia and diagnosis of an early respiratory infection are risk factors for late respiratory infections that may be used to guide targeted preventive strategies."

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