Center for Cytokine Storm Treatment & Laboratory

The CSTL is a Program of Excellence of the Penn Orphan Disease Center

Our Vision

The CSTL’s vision is to conduct groundbreaking research on Castleman Disease and other related lymphadenopathies to identify optimal treatments and provide world-class patient care. 

Our Mission

The CSTL’s mission is to conduct groundbreaking translational research on Castleman Disease, related inflammatory lymphadenopathies, and cytokine storms to discover novel diagnostic biomarkers and therapeutics, identify optimal treatment approaches, and provide world-class patient care.

The CSTL pursues its mission through basic & translational research, clinical research (ACCELERATE Natural History Registry), clinical trials (NCT03933904), and multi-disciplinary patient care.

Latest News

  • New Article Published in Journal of Clinical Investigations Insight! Thursday, May 7, 2020

    A paper recently published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation Insight seeks to determine what's happening at the cellular level in the immune systems of Castleman Disease patients during a cytokine storm. Researchers took blood samples from iMCD patients who were asymptomatic and from those who were in flare to determine the differences in their immune cells. They discovered a group of cytokines called Type-I Interferons are highly active when patents are in flare and that the JAK pathway seems to be a critical mediator of the cytokine storm. 

    Check out the Penn News Release!

  • New Article Published in Blood Thursday, May 7, 2020

    A study recently published in Blood is one of the largest research studies of Castleman Disease ever performed. Researchers used 26 samples from iMCD patients to demonstrate that there is increased activation of the PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway. These findings suggest that patients who do not respond to siltuximab may have another option in an inhibitor drug called sirolimus that blocks this pathway. A clinical trial is underway that tests sirolumus in Il-6 blockade refractory patients. This research also highlights the possibility of drug repurposing for the rare disease community. 

    Check out the Penn News Release!

  • Study Spotlight: Insights from building a Castleman Disease-specific biospecimen bank Wednesday, August 28, 2019

    A study supported by the CDCN performed a detailed quantitative analysis of our international Contact Database and E-repository to find information that improves the collection and centralization of samples. One of the greatest challenges in advancing our understanding of rare diseases, such as Castleman disease, is the difficulty in collecting and centralizing both patient samples and relevant clinical data. These biospecimens and their information are crucial in conducting hypothesis-driven research that not only improves our understanding of the disease but also moves toward the goal of discovering new drugs and treatment regimens.

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