Cryogenics logistics: Delivering CAR-T treatments at minus 240 degrees to save lives

| | March 9, 2018
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Last year, the FDA approved the first CAR T-cell treatments—a new class of promising therapies that train the body’s immune cells to seek and destroy cancers in the blood. To work, cells have to be extracted from a patient and shipped to a pharma lab to be modified before being shipped back to the hospital for infusion through an IV. And every one of those treatments makes its cross-country journey inside liquid nitrogen-cooled containers with “Cryoport” stamped on the side.

Refrigerated trucks and shipping containers work just fine for South American produce and farm-raised frozen seafood from Asia. But cells require a more specialized solution. They’ve got to be kept cold enough to suspend all metabolic processes. We’re talking cryogenically cold; -240 degrees Fahrenheit.

With the arrival of gene and cell-based medicines, cryogenics logistics is becoming big business. And no one is a bigger player than Cryoport.

[T]he company’s engineers are working on new ways to design around human error completely. They recently patented a completely spherical dewar that uses gravity to constantly orient itself correctly inside a protective, crate-like matrix. Someday, these floating, frozen orbs carrying cancer cures could be riding right alongside your weekly Blue Apron order.

Read full, original post: Inside the company delivering the next generation of cancer therapies

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