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ORLANDO, Fla. — On the eve of a major blood disease research meeting here, Bluebird Bio and Bristol-Myers Squibb have released results from a pivotal clinical trial of their CAR-T therapy targeting multiple myeloma.

The data for the CAR-T treatment called ide-cell (formerly BB2121) have been highly anticipated because they could lead to the first regulatory approval for a personalized cell therapy in this type of lethal blood cancer. The drug achieved all of the study’s efficacy and safety goals. At the same time, the results raise some questions about the treatment’s commercial potential and may leave the door open for competing multiple myeloma therapies to surpass it relatively soon. 


In an interview, Bluebird CEO Nick Leschly called the results “incredibly encouraging, and frankly exciting.” Bluebird and Bristol plan to submit marketing applications for ide-cel in the first half of next year. 

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