KBC Cellular Therapy Facility

Kids Beating Cancer Cellular Therapy Facility
Immunotherapy, the Future of Medicine

Kids Beating Cancer has improved access to the best care and the only hope for a cure, funding over $1 Million in the latest advancements in cellular therapy medical technology previously not available in Central Florida and beyond

Stem cell transplant (also known as bone marrow transplant) is an established cellular therapy for many cancers but mostly for blood diseases once considered incurable. Cellular therapy is a type of immunotherapy. It uses your immune system to attack tumors and kill harmful cells.

Cellular therapy is the transfer of human cells to heal or replace damaged tissue or cells, and it holds great promise for patients with cancer and other diseases. Cellular therapies are transforming the way we treat cancer, bringing us closer to finding a cure.  This new Kids Beating Cancer Cellular Therapy Facility brings the most advanced cellular therapies to patients diagnosed with cancer and leukemia.

Our most treasured investment in the new Kids Beating Cancer Cellular Therapy Facility at AdventHealth Orlando will offer access to the only cutting-edge treatment in the State of Florida for pediatrics, called CAR-T. This cellular therapy will offer the of hope of a cure to the most-high risk patients and those in relapse. This treatment however, comes at a cost of $500,000 – $700,000 and most insurance companies do not cover it. Without this state-of-the-art-equipment in house, patients could only receive this treatment by sending cells to laboratories out of the state of FL with a turn-around time of 6 to 10 weeks. This long turnaround time risks that the child’s condition may deteriorate and no longer be a candidate for a transplant. By having the CAR-T treatment available in Central Florida, at a drastically reduced cost to the patient, the turn-around time will be 2 weeks.

Chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy (CAR T-cell therapy) is a new treatment that uses the patient’s own immune system to fight cancer. Certain immune system cells, called T-cells, are normally able to identify abnormal cells, like cancer cells, and destroy them before they multiply and cause disease. Sometimes, however, T-cells have trouble detecting cancer cells. CAR T-cell therapy removes T-cells from the blood and inserts a new gene into them to make it easier for the T-cells to fight cancer. The new cells are called CAR T-cells.

CAR-T is one of the many state-of-the-art medical theraipies Kids Beating Cancer has made possible through generous grants from donors like Jeunesse Kids and many other loyal supporters of Kids Beating Cancer:

  • Through the purchase of a Flow Cytometer, the patient and donor experience by cutting down wait times to confirm cell collection is adequate. This will not only streamline the lab processing time but allow patients and donors to cut 1-3 hours of their wait time during cell collection via central lines, significant for pediatric patients!
  • Apheresis, previously done by the local blood bank, struggled to process pediatric patients on the apheresis machine taking up to two days to collect. This population includes pediatric patients with brain tumors and neuroblastomas as well as allogeneic bone marrow transplants. This created an unpleasant experience for donors and can be very painful. Kids Beating Cancer  brought this service in house by purchasing the Spectra Optia’s Apheresis System by Terumo BCT.
  • Through the purchase of a Sysmex Cell Counter, utilized for  nucleated cell counts in the stem cell products for dosing purposes, counts are more accurate, The more accurate the dose, the better the patient outcomes.
  • As a Liquid Nitrogen Storage ages there is greater risk that if the tank goes down cells will be lost. This creates significant risk for our patients and program. Through Kids Beating Cancer, 2 new Liquid Nitrogen Storage Tanks were purchased  to avoid any potential loss of patient stem cells. 2 additional freezers are needed to secure the next 3 years of continued operations.
  • In order to better support the needs of the new patients, large storage tanks with liquid nitrogen have been purchased.
  • In order to cryopreserve stem cells, cryo preservatives need to be added and spun down to volume to reduce stem cell products by centrifugation ensuring the least amount of DMSO. With the purchase of two Floor Centrifuges, less DMSO will reduce side effects at transplant such as nausea and vomiting and potentially anaphylaxis.
  • Two state of the art instruments Miltenyi Prodigy and the Miltenyi MacsQuant are instruments that will expand current services to pediatric and adult patients to include:
    1. Manufacture cell therapy products depleted for alpha-beta T-cells, cutting edge therapy for reducing post-transplant Graft versus Host Disease which is a major complication after transplant
    2. Manufacture NK selected cell therapy products
    3. Potentially manufacture CAR-T cell therapy products “in-house” which are currently purchased commercially for pediatric and adult patients

YOUR support in advancing Therapies will Save Children’s Lives. For more information contact sam@kidsbeatingcancer.com or call 407-894-2888.


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