A key part of the CureWorks mission is to increase the number of clinical trials around the country so more kids have access to these promising treatments closer to home.

Expanding trials not only benefits patients and families by keeping them in their communities, it helps to improve the quality of research findings by diversifying and expanding the amount of data, which will accelerate the pace of discovery. We believe a collaborative effort among leading children’s hospitals is the best way to advance our understanding of pediatric cancer, and will result in treatments with fewer side effects, better remission rates and, ultimately, more kids growing up to realize their full potential.


Cancer immunotherapy is based on reprogramming a patient’s own cells to recognize and combat cancer cells.

Step 1


Similar to a blood donation, some of the patient’s immune cells are harvested from the body.

Step 2

Transport and Handling

We isolate the T-cells, which are the key disease fighting cells, from the harvest and ship them to our Clinical Cell Manufacturing facility.

Step 3

Cell Engineering

We then genetically engineer the cells to express a new protein (the CAR, chimeric antigen receptor) that enables T-cells to recognize and fight cancer cells.

Step 4

Patient Conditioning

When the CAR T-cells are ready, the patient may receive a conditioning therapy to enable T-cell engraftment and enhance function.

Step 5

Infusion and Monitoring

The newly engineered CAR T-cells are shipped back to the patient’s healthcare team. Through infusion, the patient receives their cell therapy and is carefully monitored for therapeutic effect and any adverse side effects.


Learn more about the value of immunotherapy and its promise for patients.

Preclinical Assessment of CD171-Directed CAR T-cell Adoptive Therapy for Childhood Neuroblastoma: CE7 Epitope Target Safety and Product Manufacturing Feasibility

National Cancer Institute

For years, the foundations of cancer treatment were surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. Over the last two decades, targeted therapies like imatinib (Gleevec®) and trastuzumab (Herceptin®)—drugs that target cancer cells by homing in on specific molecular changes seen primarily in those cells—have also cemented themselves as standard treatments for many cancers.


A Look at How CAR-T Cell Therapy Works

Associated Press

The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first treatment that genetically engineers patients’ own blood cells into an army of assassins to seek and destroy childhood leukemia. Here’s a look at how the powerful CAR-T cell therapy works.


CAR T-Cell Therapies

American Cancer Society

Your immune system helps keep track of all the substances normally found in your body. Any new substance the immune system doesn’t recognize raises an alarm, causing the immune system to attack it. CAR T-cell therapy is a promising new way to get immune cells called T cells (a type of white blood cell) to fight cancer by changing them in the lab so they can find and destroy cancer cells. CAR T-cell therapies are sometimes talked about as a type of gene or cell therapy, or an adoptive cell transfer therapy.


Novel Cancer Treatment Wins Endorsement of FDA Advisers

The Washington Post

Food and Drug Administration advisers on Wednesday enthusiastically endorsed a first-of-its-kind cancer treatment that uses patients’ revved-up immune cells to fight the disease, concluding that the therapy’s benefits for desperately ill children far outweigh its potentially dangerous side effects.


In Girl’s Last Hope, Altered Immune Cells Beat Leukemia

The New York Times

PHILIPSBURG, Pa. — Emma Whitehead has been bounding around the house lately, practicing somersaults and rugby-style tumbles that make her parents wince.

It is hard to believe, but last spring Emma, then 6, was near death from leukemia. She had relapsed twice after chemotherapy, and doctors had run out of options.