Cancer Immunotherapy Program

Children with certain cancers and other disorders of the blood and immune system may benefit from cellular immunotherapy at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). Doctors at Children's Hospital were the first to begin offering cell therapy in pediatrics as part of a pilot study in 2012. Our doctors and researchers helped develop the first national and international clinical trials for an immunotherapy known as chimeric antigen receptor (“CAR”) T-cell therapy for children with advanced acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). CAR T-cell therapy for B-cell ALL was the first-ever cell therapy to receive FDA approval. Stephan Grupp, MD, PhD, Chief of the Cellular Therapy and Transplant Section at CHOP, was the lead investigator for the global trial led by Novartis.

Emily Whitehead, First Pediatric Patient to Receive CAR T-Cell Therapy, Celebrates Cure 10 Years Later

Why Choose Us?

The Cancer Immunotherapy team at CHOP was the first to use CAR T-cell therapy in a child with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. We have since treated more than 400 children with this therapy. Our team continues to research the use of T-cell therapy in the treatment of several other forms of pediatric cancer.

Conditions We Treat

We provide highly specialized cancer immunotherapy options for children with a variety of conditions. Learn more about the conditions we treat.

Our Team

The Cancer Immunotherapy team is made up of oncologists, nurse practitioners, social workers, financial counselors, a nurse navigator and researchers with extensive experience in the treatment of children using T-cell therapy.

Next Steps
Existing Patients or Family Members
New Patients, Referrals and 2nd Opinions
Young boy cancer patient outside

Referring a Patient

Here’s what you can expect after contacting the Cancer Immunotherapy Program.

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Cancer Immunotherapy Studies

The Cancer Immunotherapy Program has several clinical trials available to qualified patients.

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How Cancer Immunotherapy Works

This is a child-friendly explanation of how cancer immunotherapy, or T-cell therapy, works.


Cancer Immunotherapy Program: Video Tour

Here's what you can expect as a patient of our Cancer Immunotherapy Program.


CAR T-cell Therapy

In CAR T-cell therapy, immune cells called T cells are genetically modified to recognize cancerous B cells.