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Program Leaders:

David L. Porter, MDDavid L. Porter, MD
Director, Cell Therapy and Transplant
Jodi Fisher Horowitz Professor in Leukemia Care Excellence

Alison Loren, MD, MSAlison Wakoff Loren, MD, MSCE
Vice Chair, Faculty Development, Department of Medicine
Director, Blood and Marrow Transplantation

Noelle Frey, MDNoelle V. Frey, MD, MS
Director, Immune Effector Cell Therapies

Administrative Team

Robert Richards headshotRobert E. Richards, MSBI, MBA
Administrative Director, Cell Therapy and Transplant

Kathleen Cunningham headshotKathleen Cunningham, RN
Program Manager, Cell Therapy and Transplant

Jacquekine Rick headshotJacqui Rick, PhD
Program Manager, Cell Therapy and Transplant Clinical Trials Unit

The Cell Therapy and Transplant program includes hematopoietic stem cell transplant and non-transplant cellular therapies. The Blood and Marrow transplant program is accredited by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cell Therapy and has performed over 3000 transplants over the past two decades, making us one of the largest in the nation. In addition, we are one of the most active programs in the world for adoptive cell therapy to treat cancer; over the last 10 years, over 600 chimeric antigen receptor-modified T cells (CAR T) and other cell therapies have been administered to patients using both research and commercially available products.

Doctor and administrator talkingResearch in these programs is focused on:

  • Using cellular and vaccine immunotherapy to decrease disease relapse after autologous and allogenic transplantation
  • Reduced intensity allogeneic transplantation and novel pharmacologic approaches to decrease toxicity
  • Testing new methods to prevent Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) that may make transplant safer
  • Studying new approaches to autologous stem cell transplant incorporating vaccine therapies and novel medical therapies before and after transplant
  • Pioneering work to develop genetically modified T cells (CAR T) to treat cancer.
  • Use of gene-modified stem cells to improve outcomes after transplant.

Dr. Frey on a panelCellular and transplant research at Penn is accomplished through the Abramson Cancer Center's National Cancer Institute-approved and funded Hematologic Malignancies Program. Penn investigators are founding members and leaders of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded Blood and Marrow Clinical Trials Network (BMT-CTN), dedicated to conducting cutting edge clinical trials of novel approaches to improve the outcome of autologous and allogeneic stem cell transplantation. Penn investigators also developed and led initial testing of tisagenlecleucel, the first genetically modified T cell product ever approved by the FDA to treat leukemia.

The research program benefits from a close collaboration with the Center for Cellular Immunotherapy and the Clinical Cell and Vaccine Production Facility which performs cell and biologic processing and expansion on a range of different cell types.

Medical oncologists who perform bone marrow and stem cell transplants include:

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