Once a fringe area of cancer research, cell therapy has exploded over the last decade. Since 2017, several treatments have come to market for blood cancers like leukemia and multiple myeloma, establishing cell therapy as a new class of medicines.
Along the way, interest among large drugmakers has grown. Novartis and Gilead Sciences were some of the field’s earliest adopters, cutting deals that led to the first two CAR-T therapies to win approval, Kymriah and Yescarta. Bristol Myers Squibb and Johnson & Johnson followed with deals that have also produced marketed treatments.