In a phase I study of autologous chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) anti-LeY T-cell therapy of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), we examined the safety and postinfusion persistence of adoptively transferred T cells. Following fludarabine-containing preconditioning, four patients received up to 1.3 × 109 total T cells, of which 14-38% expressed the CAR. Grade 3 or 4 toxicity was not observed. One patient achieved a cytogenetic remission whereas another with active leukemia had a reduction in peripheral blood (PB) blasts and a third showed a protracted remission. Using an aliquot of In111-labeled CAR T cells, we demonstrated trafficking to the bone marrow (BM) in those patients with the greatest clinical benefit. Furthermore, in a patient with leukemia cutis, CAR T cells infiltrated proven sites of disease. Serial PCR of PB and BM for the LeY transgene demonstrated that infused CAR T cells persisted for up to 10 months. Our study supports the feasibility and safety of CAR-T-cell therapy in high-risk AML, and demonstrates durable in vivo persistence.