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ORLANDO, Fla. — One year ago, a Chinese scientist stepped up to a podium at the American Society of Hematology (ASH) annual meeting and presented early results from a Chinese-developed CAR-T therapy for multiple myeloma. The patient responses to this CAR-T were among the highest ever reported, but the data, collected entirely from patients in Chinese hospitals — were met with skepticism from the standing-room crowd.

When the floor was opened for questions, several English-speaking scientists in the audience rose up, grabbed available microphones and cast doubt on the credibility and trustworthiness of the Chinese CAR-T data. The Chinese scientist, in halting English, struggled to respond. It was an uncomfortable scene, and not what you’d expect to see at a typically genteel cancer research meeting.

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