10 Years of CAR T-cell Therapy

First child to receive revolutionary CAR T therapy celebrates 10 years cancer free

Emily Whitehead, now 17, received life-saving treatment at CHOP's No. 1 ranked pediatric oncology program, transforming the field of cancer immunotherapy

In 2012, Tom and Kari Whitehead came to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) looking for a miracle for their 6-year-old daughter, Emily, who was battling acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). The standard treatment that works for the vast majority of children with ALL — the most common form of childhood cancer — did not work for Emily. She relapsed twice, and her disease was so out of control that she was ineligible for a bone marrow transplant to treat it. 


How cancer immunotherapy works

This is a kid-friendly explanation of how cancer immunotherapy (T-cell therapy) works. This animation explains, in simple terms, how scientists harness the power of the immune system to kill cancer cells.

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.

Torie CART

Cancer Immunotherapy Studies

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