This week in drug discovery (18-22 March) 

News round-up for 18-22 March by DDW Digital Content Editor Diana Spencer.

This has been an interesting week for cell and gene therapies, with two landmark FDA approvals, two significant fundraising efforts and potentially ground-breaking study results in glioblastoma.

The top stories:

‘Dual-target’ CAR-T cell therapy shrinks brain tumours

Targeting two brain tumour-associated proteins – rather than one – with CAR-T cell therapy has shown promise as a strategy for reducing solid tumour growth in patients with recurrent glioblastoma (GBM).

FDA approves first CAR-T cell therapy for relapsed CLL or SLL

The US FDA has granted accelerated approval of Breyanzi (lisocabtagene maraleucel; liso-cel), a CD19-directed chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy, for relapsed or refractory chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) or small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL).

€30m raised for first-in-class in vivo cell reprogramming platform

Biotech Asgard Therapeutics has closed a €30 million Series A financing to support the development of its lead programme, AT-108.

First gene therapy for children with rare disease gets US sign-off

Lenmeldy (atidarsagene autotemcel) has become the first FDA-approved gene therapy for the treatment of children with pre-symptomatic late infantile, pre-symptomatic early juvenile or early symptomatic early juvenile metachromatic leukodystrophy (MLD).

$175M financing will support development of in vivo CAR-T therapies

Biotechnology company Capstan Therapeutics has raised $175 million in an oversubscribed Series B financing.

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