What We're Reading: Kymriah's Second Indication; NIH All of Us Database; Kansas' Medicaid Lifetime Limits

The chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy tisagenlecleucel has been approved for a second type of blood cancer; the National Institutes of Health has started recruiting individuals for a database that will include data on more than 1 million people; Kansas’ request to impose a 3-year lifetime limit on Medicaid benefits is testing just how open the Trump administration is to allowing states flexibility.

Kymriah Gets Approved for a Second Indication

The chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy tisagenlecleucel (sold as Kymriah by Novartis) has been approved for a second type of blood cancer. The new indication will allow tisagenlecleucel to compete directly with the other CAR T-cell therapy approved in cancer, axicabtagene ciloleucel (marketed as Yescarta by Gilead Science), reported Reuters. The new indication is for treatment of large B-cell lymphoma that has worsened despite 2 or more previous lines of therapy. Tisagenlecleucel was first approved in patients up to age 25 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

NIH Is Recruiting 1 Million Volunteers for Database

As part of the All of Us program, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is recruiting individuals for a database that will include data on more than 1 million people. According to The Wall Street Journal, the effort is an attempt to understand the genetics of diseases and healthy aging. The database will be open to researchers and currently only adults are eligible to volunteer their data. NIH will also make efforts to recruit people who are often underrepresented in medical research.

Trump Administration Hesitates Over Kansas’ Medicaid Lifetime Limits

Kansas’ request to impose a 3-year lifetime limit on Medicaid benefits is testing just how open the Trump administration is to allowing states flexibility. The administration planned to announce it had rejected the request, but canceled at the last minute, indicating internal disagreements, reported The Hill. Kansas’ request would drop people from the Medicaid program forever after they receive benefits for 3 years.