Symptoms of Crohn’s may include pain, fever, diarrhea and weight loss. Substantial progress has been made in medical treatment of Crohn’s disease over the last 15 years. However, even with the best immunosuppressive therapy, less than half of patients with moderate to severe Crohn’s achieve long-term relief. When patients stop taking their medicines, their intestinal inflammation returns. Some severe infections have been seen in patients who took prolonged courses of medicines that suppress the immune system.
“The burden of this disease lays heavily on those who don’t respond to any therapy," McDonald said.
The CATS investigator team includes transplant physicians, gastroenterologists, pathologists and nurses from the Hutchinson Center, University of Washington, Seattle Children’s and the Benaroya Research Institute. The bone marrow transplant procedures will be conducted at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, the University of Washington Medical Center, and Seattle Children’s Hospital.