Tecartus (brexucabtagene autoleucel) is a brand-name drug that’s prescribed for certain types of lymphoma and leukemia in adults. Tecartus is given as an intravenous (IV) infusion in a specialized facility. You’ll likely receive just one dose.

Tecartus is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat the following conditions. It’s prescribed when the conditions have come back after treatment or haven’t responded to other treatments.

Tecartus is a biologic cell therapy. (A cell therapy is a treatment that inserts human cells into the body to replace other damaged or diseased cells.) Tecartus belongs to a drug class called autologous cellular immunotherapy. Tecartus is not available in a biosimilar version.

Keep reading for specific information about the dosage of Tecartus, including its strength and how the medication is given. For a comprehensive look at Tecartus, see this article.

Note: This article describes typical dosages for Tecartus provided by the drug’s manufacturer. However, your doctor will prescribe the Tecartus dosage that’s right for you.

Read below for recommended dosage of Tecartus and other details about the drug.

Tecartus form

Tecartus comes as a liquid suspension that’s given as an IV infusion. It’s always given by a healthcare professional and must be given in a REMS-certified healthcare facility.

Tecartus strength

Tecartus doesn’t have a standard strength. This is because it’s made using T cells collected from your blood. T cells are a type of lymphocyte, or white blood cell. White blood cells help the body fight infection.

In order to prepare your body for Tecartus, you’ll likely receive a short course of chemotherapy to help lower your white blood cell count. Before receiving your Tecartus infusion, some of your blood will be collected and sent to a lab. The lab will modify the T cells from your blood to make them more effective at fighting the cancer cells. They will use the modified T cells to prepare your dose of Tecartus.

Typical dosages

The following information describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. Your doctor will determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Dosage for mantle cell lymphoma

Doctors may prescribe Tecartus to treat mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) that has come back or hasn’t responded to previous treatments.

You’ll receive just one dose of Tecartus. Your doctor will determine your dose based on your body weight and a target T-cell range. The target dose is 2 million to 200 million modified T cells per kilogram (kg) of body weight. One kg equals about 2.2 pounds (lb).

For more information about your specific dosage, talk with your doctor.

Dosage for acute lymphoblastic leukemia

Tecartus is also approved to help treat acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) that has come back or hasn’t responded to previous treatments.

You’ll receive just one dose of Tecartus. For ALL, the target dose of Tecartus is 1 million to 100 million modified T cells per kg of body weight. One kg equals about 2.2 pounds (lb).

Talk with your doctor if you have questions about your dosage.

Long-term treatment

Tecartus is used short term for MCL or ALL. It’s typically given as a one-time IV infusion.

The Tecartus dose your doctor prescribes will depend on several factors. These include:

  • your body weight
  • the type of cancer you’re using Tecartus to treat

Treatment with Tecartus involves several steps. For detailed information on what will happen with each step of the process, see the Tecartus website.

Below is an overview of what to expect. Your doctor can tell you more about each step of the process.

A few weeks before the infusion

Tecartus is a cell therapy that’s made from your own T cells, which are a type of white blood cell.

About 2–3 weeks before your Tecartus infusion, you’ll have your T cells collected. To do this, you’ll go to a cell collection center and have a procedure called leukapheresis.

During leukapheresis, some of your blood is passed through a machine. The machine separates out your T cells and then returns the rest of the blood to your body. The process typically takes about 3–4 hours.

After your leukapheresis appointment, the collected cells are sent to the Tecartus manufacturer. They’ll modify the cells and make your customized dose of Tecartus. Then they will send it to the facility where you’ll receive the infusion.

During your leukapheresis appointment, you may experience side effects. These can include fatigue, chills, dizziness, or tingling in your fingers or around your mouth during the procedure.

You can talk with your doctor to learn more about what to expect during and after leukapheresis.

A few days before the infusion

You’ll have pretreatment with low dose chemotherapy before your Tecartus infusion. This will take place at the treatment center where you’ll receive your infusion. You’ll have 3 days of chemotherapy at the center, followed by a few days of rest at home.

The purpose of the chemotherapy is to decrease the number of T cells in your body to make room for the modified T cells in the Tecartus infusion. Doing this helps make the Tecartus infusion more effective.

During the infusion

You’ll receive Tecartus by IV infusion at a healthcare facility that’s certified to give Tecartus. This makes sure that Tecartus is given safely by a healthcare professional who has been specially trained. The infusion typically takes about 30 minutes.

About 30–60 minutes before your infusion, your doctor will likely give you medications including acetaminophen (Tylenol) and an antihistamine, such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl). These drugs help reduce the risk of infusion reactions. These are side effects that can occur from receiving medication as an IV infusion.

After the infusion

After the infusion, your doctor will monitor you for side effects. These can include serious conditions such as cytokine release syndrome (CRS) and neurological toxicities. (For details, see the boxed warning at the start of this article.)

How long you’ll need to be monitored depends on the condition Tecartus is being used to treat:

  • If you’re being treated for MCL, you’ll stay at the treatment center for monitoring at least 1 week after your infusion.
  • If you’re being treated for ALL, you’ll stay at the treatment center for monitoring at least 2 weeks after your infusion.

Whether you’re being treated for MCL or ALL, you’ll need to stay nearby for 4 weeks after you leave the facility. Staying close to the facility enables you to get prompt treatment in case serious side effects occur.

You should not drive, use heavy machinery, or do other potentially dangerous activities for 8 weeks following your infusion. This is because Tecartus can cause side effects such as confusion, sleepiness, or weakness, all of which can make these activities especially dangerous.

Your doctor can tell you more about what to expect after the infusion or during any of the steps of your treatment.

Below are some frequently asked questions about Tecartus.

How long does it take for Tecartus to start working?

Tecartus starts to work after your dose. Because of how the drug works, you likely won’t feel the drug working in your body. The time from your infusion to when your doctor may see an effect from the treatment can vary from 28–90 days, depending on what type of cancer is being treated. Your doctor will monitor you to check whether the drug is working to treat your condition.

Talk with your doctor if you have questions about what to expect with Tecartus treatment.

What is the recommended maximum dosage of Tecartus?

Your doctor will determine the dosage that’s right for you. But the maximum dosage for Tecartus depends on the condition being treated:

  • The maximum dosage of Tecartus that’s recommended for MCL is 200 million modified T cells per kilogram (kg) of body weight.
  • The maximum dosage that’s recommended for ALL is 100 million modified T cells per kg of body weight.

If you have questions or concerns about your dosage of Tecartus, talk with your doctor.

The dosages in this article are typical dosages provided by the drug’s manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Tecartus for you, they will prescribe the dosage that’s right for you. If you have questions about your Tecartus dosage, talk with your doctor.

Besides learning about dosage, you may want other information about Tecartus. These additional articles might be helpful:

Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.