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Approval recommended for new leukemia treatment

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A new treatment has been recommended for approval that could be the first gene therapy available in the U.S. for leukemia.

A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel voted unanimously to recommend approval of the treatment developed by the University of Pennsylvania and Novartis.

The FDA is not required to follow the panel's recommendation, but usually does.

The treatment called CAR-T involves removing immune cells from a patient's blood, reprogramming them to recognize and destroy cancer cells and injecting them back into the patient.

It would be used on children and young adults with advanced acute lymphoblastic leukemia.