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1.  IFN-γ Mediates the Rejection of Haematopoietic Stem Cells in IFN-γR1-Deficient Hosts 
PLoS Medicine  2008;5(1):e26.
Interferon-γ receptor 1 (IFN-γR1) deficiency is a life-threatening inherited disorder, conferring predisposition to mycobacterial diseases. Haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is the only curative treatment available, but is hampered by a very high rate of graft rejection, even with intra-familial HLA-identical transplants. This high rejection rate is not seen in any other congenital disorders and remains unexplained. We studied the underlying mechanism in a mouse model of HSCT for IFN-γR1 deficiency.
Methods and Findings
We demonstrated that HSCT with cells from a syngenic C57BL/6 Ifngr1+/+ donor engrafted well and restored anti-mycobacterial immunity in naive, non-infected C57BL/6 Ifngr1−/− recipients. However, Ifngr1−/− mice previously infected with Mycobacterium bovis bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) rejected HSCT. Like infected IFN-γR1-deficient humans, infected Ifngr1−/− mice displayed very high serum IFN-γ levels before HSCT. The administration of a recombinant IFN-γ-expressing AAV vector to Ifngr1−/− naive recipients also resulted in HSCT graft rejection. Transplantation was successful in Ifngr1−/− × Ifng−/− double-mutant mice, even after BCG infection. Finally, efficient antibody-mediated IFN-γ depletion in infected Ifngr1−/− mice in vivo allowed subsequent engraftment.
High serum IFN-γ concentration is both necessary and sufficient for graft rejection in IFN-γR1-deficient mice, inhibiting the development of heterologous, IFN-γR1-expressing, haematopoietic cell lineages. These results confirm that IFN-γ is an anti-haematopoietic cytokine in vivo. They also pave the way for HSCT management in IFN-γR1-deficient patients through IFN-γ depletion from the blood. They further raise the possibility that depleting IFN-γ may improve engraftment in other settings, such as HSCT from a haplo-identical or unrelated donor.
Claire Soudais and colleagues investigated the mechanism of rejection of hematopoietic stem cell transplants in patients with interferon-gamma receptor 1 (IFN-γR1) deficiency and show that IFN-γ is an anti-hematopoietic cytokine in vivo.
Editors' Summary
Normally, the body's immune system efficiently recognizes and kills bacteria and viruses, but in some rare inherited disorders (“primary immunodeficiencies”) part of the immune system works poorly or is missing. This leaves affected individuals susceptible to infections. People with one of these disorders—interferon-gamma receptor 1 (IFN- γR1) deficiency—are very susceptible to infections with mycobacteria. Except for Mycobacterium tuberculosis and M. leprae (which cause tuberculosis and leprosy, respectively), mycobacteria rarely cause human disease. However, most people with IFN-γR1 deficiency die during childhood from multiple, widespread mycobacterial infections, because IFN-γR1 deficiency disables a specific part of their immune system. When most bacteria enter the body, immune system cells called macrophages engulf and kill them, but mycobacteria actually multiply inside macrophages. This infection stimulates lymphocytes and other immune system cells to release IFN-γ, which binds to IFN-γR1 on uninfected macrophages, activates them, and recruits them to the infection site. Here, they form a “granuloma,” a mass of macrophages and activated lymphocytes that “walls off” the infection. Granuloma formation does not occur in patients with IFN-γR1 deficiency, so mycobacteria (including the usually benign tuberculosis vaccination strain M. bovis BCG) spread throughout the body with disastrous consequences.
Why Was This Study Done?
The only effective treatment for patients with IFN-γR1 deficiency is hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). HSCs are the source of all the immune system cells, so transplantation of HSCs from a donor with a normal IFNGR1 gene can provide a patient who has IFN-γR1 deficiency with a new immune system that can combat mycobacterial infections. Unfortunately, in this particular immune deficiency, the new HSCs cannot engraft, even when the patient's own immune system is disabled before HSCT by intensive chemotherapy, and when the donor cells come from a close relative and are a good immunological match. In this study, the researchers have investigated why rejection is so common in IFN-γR1 deficiency using a mouse strain called C57BL/6 Ifngr1−/−—C57BL/6 denotes the genetic background of these mice and Ifngr1−/− indicates that, like human patients, these mice make no IFN-γR1.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
Ifngr1−/− mice, the researchers report, cannot control M. bovis BCG infections and do not form mature granulomas just like human patients with IFN-γR1 deficiency. Wild-type C57BL/6 (Ifngr1+/+) mice, however, rapidly control M. bovis BCG infections and form mature granulomas. Ifngr1+/+ HSC transplanted into mycobacteria-free Ifngr1−/− mice survived well and protected the mice against later mycobacterial challenge but Ifngr1−/− mice infected with M. bovis BCG before HSCT rejected the transplanted HSCs. Mycobacteria-infected Ifngr1−/− mice and human patients with IFN-γR1 deficiency have blood high levels of IFN-γ. Could this be responsible for HSCT rejection? To find out, the researchers expressed IFN-γ in uninfected Ifngr1−/− mice before HSCT. As in infected mice, these grafts failed. Conversely, transplanted HSCs survived when transplanted into Ifngr1−/− mice that had been genetically altered to express no IFN-γ, even when these mice were infected with M. bovis BCG before transplantation. Finally, when the researchers used antibodies (proteins made by the immune system that recognize specific molecules) to remove circulating IFN-γ from infected Ifngr1−/− mice, HSCT worked well in the animals with the lowest IFN-γ levels.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings indicate that in a mouse model of IFN-γR1 deficiency, high circulating IFN-γ concentrations drive the rejection of transplanted HSCs and prevent the development of antimycobacterial immunity, probably by directly killing the transplanted cells and/or stopping them multiplying. They also suggest how HSCT could be improved in patients with IFN-γR1 deficiency although, as with all animal studies, the situation in people might turn out to be very different. Importantly, antibodies that reduce circulating IFN-γ are already being used to treat other human immune diseases, so the clinical use of these antibodies in patients with IFN-γ deficiency before HSCT is feasible. Finally, the researchers speculate that the use of IFN-γ–depleting antibodies might be beneficial in other situations where HSCT often fails such as when a close relative is not available as a donor. However, this possibility will need to be thoroughly tested in mice before human clinical trials can be started.
Additional Information.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at
General information about primary immunodeficiencies is available from the US National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) provides information about familial predisposition to mycobacterial disease
Wikipedia has pages on hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and on interferon-γ (note that Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit; available in several languages)
The Human Genetics of Infectious Diseases Lab focuses on the genetic basis of predicposition or resistance to infectious diseases in humans
PMCID: PMC2214797  PMID: 18232731
2.  Change in serum proteome during allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and clinical significance of serum C-reactive protein and haptoglobin 
Experimental & Molecular Medicine  2010;42(9):651-661.
Successful hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) involves the restoration of hematopoietic function after engraftment, arising from the differentiation and proliferation of hematopoietic stem cells. Several factors could influence the course of allogeneic-HSCT (allo-HSCT). Therefore, knowledge of serum proteome changes during the allo-HSCT period might increase the efficacy of diagnosis and disease prevention efforts. This study conducted proteomic analyses to find proteins that were significantly altered in response to allo-HSCT. Sera from five representative patients who underwent allo-HSCT were analyzed by 2-dimensional gel electrophoresis and liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry, and were measured on a weekly basis before and after allo-HSCT in additional 78 patients. Fourteen protein spots showing changes in expression were further examined, and most proteins were identified as acute phase proteins (APPs). Studies of 78 additional patients confirmed that C-reactive protein (CRP) and haptoglobin undergo expression changes during allo-HSCT and thus may have the potential to serve as representative markers of clinical events after allo-HSCT. Maximal CRP level affected the development of major transplant-related complications (MTCs) and other problems such as fever of unknown origin. Particularly, an increase in CRP level 21 days after allo-HSCT was found to be an independent risk factor for MTC. Maximal haptoglobin and haptoglobin level 14 days after allo-HSCT were predictive of relapses in underlying hematologic disease. Our results indicated that CRP and haptoglobin were significantly expressed during allo-HSCT, and suggest that their level can be monitored after allo-HSCT to assess the risks of early transplant-related complications and relapse.
PMCID: PMC2947022  PMID: 20716902
biological markers; C-reactive protein; haptoglobin; hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; proteomics; recurrence
3.  The treatment of pediatric chronic myelogenous leukemia in the imatinib era 
Korean Journal of Pediatrics  2011;54(3):111-116.
Childhood chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) is a rare hematologic disease, with limited literature on the methods of treatment. Previously, allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) was considered the only curative treatment for this disease. Treatment with imatinib, a selective inhibitor of the BCR-ABL tyrosine kinase (TKI), has resulted in prolonged molecular response with limited drug toxicity. Imatinib is now implemented in the primary treatment regimen for children, but the paucity of evidence on its ability to result in permanent cure and the potential complications that may arise from long-term treatment with TKIs have prevented imatinib from superseding HSCT as the primary means of curative treatment in children. The results of allogeneic HSCT in children with CML are similar to those observed in adults; HSCT-related complications such as transplant-related mortality and graft-versus-host disease remain significant challenges. An overall consensus has been formed with regards to the need for HSCT in patients with imatinib resistance or those with advanced-phase disease. However, issues such as when to undertake HSCT in chronic-phase CML patients or how best to treat patients who have relapsed after HSCT are still controversial. The imatinib era calls for a reevaluation of the role of HSCT in the treatment of CML. Specific guidelines for the treatment of pediatric CML have not yet been formulated, underscoring the importance of prospective studies on issues such as duration of imatinib treatment, optimal timing of HSCT and the type of conditioning utilized, possible treatment pre- and post-HSCT, and the role of second-generation TKIs.
PMCID: PMC3120996  PMID: 21738540
Chronic myelogenous leukemia; Children; Treatment; Imatinib; Transplantation; Tyrosine kinase inhibitors
4.  Efficacy of Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation in Intermediate-Risk Acute Myeloid Leukemia Adult Patients in First Complete Remission: A Meta-Analysis of Prospective Studies 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(7):e0132620.
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and consolidation chemotherapy have been used to treat intermediate-risk acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients in first complete remission (CR1). However, it is still unclear which treatments are most effective for these patients. The aim of our study was to analyze the relapse-free survival (RFS) and overall survival (OS) benefit of allogeneic HSCT (alloHSCT) for intermediate-risk AML patients in CR1. A meta-analysis of prospective trials comparing alloHSCT to non-alloHSCT (autologous HSCT [autoHSCT] and/or chemotherapy) was undertaken. We systematically searched PubMed, Embase, and the Cochrane Library though October 2014, using keywords and relative MeSH or Emtree terms, ‘allogeneic’; ‘acut*’ and ‘leukem*/aml/leukaem*/leucem*/leucaem*’; and ‘nonlympho*’ or ‘myelo*’. A total of 7053 articles were accessed. The primary outcomes were RFS and OS, while the secondary outcomes were treatment-related mortality (TRM) and relapse rate (RR). Hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated for each outcome. The primary outcomes were RFS and OS, while the secondary outcomes were TRM and RR. We included 9 prospective controlled studies including 1950 adult patients. Patients with intermediate-risk AML in CR1 who received either alloHSCT or non-alloHSCT were considered eligible. AlloHSCT was found to be associated with significantly better RFS, OS, and RR than non-alloHSCT (HR, 0.684 [95% CI: 0.48, 0.95]; HR, 0.76 [95% CI: 0.61, 0.95]; and HR, 0.58 [95% CI: 0.45, 0.75], respectively). TRM was significantly higher following alloHSCT than non-alloHSCT (HR, 3.09 [95% CI: 1.38, 6.92]). However, subgroup analysis showed no OS benefit for alloHSCT over autoHSCT (HR, 0.99 [95% CI: 0.70, 1.39]). In conclusion, alloHSCT is associated with more favorable RFS, OS, and RR benefits (but not TRM outcomes) than non-alloHSCT generally, but does not have an OS advantage over autoHSCT specifically, in patients with intermediate-risk AML in CR1.
PMCID: PMC4510363  PMID: 26197471
5.  Longitudinal Changes in Body Mass and Composition in Survivors of Childhood Hematologic Malignancies After Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem-Cell Transplantation 
Journal of Clinical Oncology  2012;30(32):3991-3997.
To measure longitudinal changes in body mass and composition in survivors of childhood hematologic malignancies after allogeneic hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation (HSCT).
Patients and Methods
Body mass index (BMI) was analyzed in 179 survivors by category (underweight, healthy-weight, overweight, and obese) and by z score. Fat and lean body mass measured by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry was analyzed as z scores.
Over a median 6.6 years of follow-up, BMI z scores diminished significantly (0.32 pre-HSCT v −0.60 at 10 years post-HSCT; P < .001). Mean z scores for fat mass stayed within population norms, but those for lean mass remained below normal levels and diminished significantly over time (P = .018). Pre-HSCT BMI category and/or z score were strongly predictive of post-HSCT BMI (P < .001) and of fat and lean mass z scores (both P < .001). Survivors with extensive chronic graft-versus-host disease were more likely than others to have low BMI (P = .004) and low lean mass (P < .001) post-HSCT. Older age at HSCT (P = .015) and T-cell–depleted graft (P = .018) were predictive of lower post-HSCT BMI. Female patients had higher body fat (P = .002) and lower lean mass (P = .013) z scores than male patients, and black patients had higher fat mass z scores than white patients (P = .026).
BMI declines significantly after allogeneic HSCT for childhood hematologic malignancies, reflecting primarily a substantial decrease in lean mass but not fat mass. Monitoring and preservation of BMI and lean mass are vital, especially in those with the identified risk factors.
PMCID: PMC3675688  PMID: 23032628
6.  Favorable outcome of haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia: a multicenter study in Southwest China 
Since the introduction of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) into combination chemotherapy regimens, the majority of newly diagnosed Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph+ ALL) patients have achieved complete remission (CR). However, without allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), long-term outcomes in adults remain unsatisfactory. Indeed, haploidentical HSCT has become a common treatment for adult patients who lack an HLA-matched donor, though limited data are available on the efficacy of haploidentical HSCT in Ph+ ALL patients.
We analyzed the clinical outcomes of 82 Ph+ ALL patients who underwent haploidentical HSCT (n = 47) or HLA-matched HSCT (n = 35). Real-time quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) was performed to assess BCR-ABL expression. All of the patients were treated with an imatinib-based regimen before undergoing HSCT. Imatinib treatment was resumed in the patients’ posttransplantation following detection of BCR-ABL transcripts.
All of the patients achieved neutrophil and platelet engraftment, with the exception of five patients who died prior to engraftment. Haploidentical HSCT was associated with higher incidences of acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) (51.1 vs. 25.7 %, p < 0.05) and chronic GVHD (48.9 vs. 25.7 %, p < 0.05) compared with HLA-matched HSCT, but there was no difference in the incidence of either grades III–IV acute GVHD or extensive chronic GVHD. The incidence of cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection was significantly higher in the patients treated with haploidentical HSCT than in those treated with HLA-matched HSCT (38.3 vs. 14.3 %, p < 0.05). Haploidentical HSCT was associated with a significantly lower relapse rate compared with HLA-matched HSCT (44.8 vs. 19.1 %, p < 0.05). There were no differences in non-relapse mortality (NRM), leukemia-free survival (LFS), or overall survival (OS) between the patients who received HLA-matched HSCT and those who underwent haploidentical HSCT.
Our data indicate that the incidence of NRM after HSCT is similar between the patients who receive HLA-matched donor cells and those who receive haploidentical donor cells and that haploidentical HSCT reduces the relapse rate. Haploidentical HSCT represents an encouraging treatment option for Ph+ ALL patients who lack a suitable HLA-matched donor.
PMCID: PMC4515001  PMID: 26208715
7.  Late Complications in acute Leukemia patients following HSCT: A single center experience 
Background: Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is currently the only curative treatment for acute leukemia. As HSCT improves the long-term survival, it is necessary to assess the late-onset complications affecting the quality of life following HSCT.
Subjects and Methods: The study included 122 patients (65 male, 57 female) with leukemia (72 AML and 50 ALL) who received transplants from fully- matched siblings, unrelated donors and unrelated cord blood donors between February 2013 and August 2014 in Shariati Hospital. All study participants were over 18 years of age and had the minimum and maximum survival of 2 and 5 years, respectively. Patients who received HLA-haploidentical SCT were excluded from the study. All allogeneic recipients received busulfan and cyclophosphamide as conditioning regimen. Nobody received TBI-based conditioning regimen in this study. Patients were evaluated for cardiovascular, vision, psychological, endocrine, fertility problems and secondary malignancies one year after transplantation.
Results : Data were analyzed using SPSS 15.0. Mitral and tricuspid regurgitation (TR/MR) were the most common cardiac complications (n=12, 10.5%).Thirty-nine percent of patients had psychological problems, especially depression (34%). Cataract was observed in 13% of patients and 34% complained of dry eye. Symptomatic pulmonary changes were found in 13 patients (10.6%). None of the HSCT survivors had experienced fertility before study entry. According to LH and FSH levels, 15% and 9% of females had ovarian failure, respectively. Testosterone level was less than normal in 49(84%) men and, according to their FSH and LH level, 20 (41%) had secondary hypogonadism and 29 (59%) had primary gonadal dysfunction.
Conclusion: The results showed that patients who received Bu/Cy conditioning regimen experienced fewer late side effects such as cataract formation and hypothyroidism, compared to previous studies using TBI-based conditioning regimen.
PMCID: PMC4818783  PMID: 27047644
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT); Late complications; TBI / BuCy regimens
8.  The Perceived Threat in Adults with Leukemia Undergoing Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation 
Nursing and Midwifery Studies  2013;2(2):226-233.
Leukemia and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) create physical, psychological, social, and spiritual distresses in patients. Understanding this threatening situation in adults with leukemia undergoing HSCT will assist health care professionals in providing holistic care to the patients.
The aim of the present study was exploring the perceived threat in adults with leukemia undergoing HSCT.
Patients and Methods:
This article is part of a longitudinal qualitative study which used the grounded theory approach and was conducted in 2009-2011. Ten adults with acute leukemia scheduled for HSCT were recruited from the Hematology–Oncology Research Center and Stem Cell Transplantation, Shariati Hospital in Tehran, Iran. A series of pre-transplant and post-transplant in-depth interviews were held in the hospital’s HSCT wards. Totally, 18 interviews were conducted. Three written narratives were also obtained from the participants. The Corbin and Strauss approach was used to analyze the data.
Perceived threat was one of the main categories that emerged from the data. This category included four subcategories, "inattention to the signs and symptoms", "doubt and anxiety", "perception of danger and time limitation" and "change of life conditions", which occurred in linear progression over time.
Suffering from leukemia and experiencing HSCT are events that are uniquely perceived by patients. This threatening situation can significantly effect perception of patients and cause temporary or permanent alterations in patients' lives. Health care professionals can help these patients by deeper understanding of their experiences and effective interventions.
PMCID: PMC4228549  PMID: 25414863
Cancer; Fear; Grounded theory; Leukemia; Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; Threat
9.  Cost Structure and Clinical Outcome of a Stem Cell Transplantation Program in a Developing Country: The Experience in Northeast Mexico 
The Oncologist  2015;20(4):386-392.
The costs of laboratory tests, medical procedures, chemotherapy drugs, other drugs, and hospitalization of patients receiving an allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) were scrutinized to calculate the total cost for each patient and the median cost for the procedure and to assess its clinical outcomes. The results show that HSCT is an affordable option for hematological patients living in a developing country.
Background and Objective.
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in developing countries is cost-limited. Our primary goal was to determine the cost structure for the HSCT program model developed over the last decade at our public university hospital and to assess its clinical outcomes.
Materials and Methods.
Adults and children receiving an allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant from January 2010 to February 2011 at our hematology regional reference center were included. Laboratory tests, medical procedures, chemotherapy drugs, other drugs, and hospitalization costs were scrutinized to calculate the total cost for each patient and the median cost for the procedure. Data regarding clinical evolution were incorporated into the analysis. Physician fees are not charged at the institution and therefore were not included.
Fifty patients were evaluated over a 1-year period. The total estimated cost for an allogeneic HSCT was $12,504. The two most expensive diseases to allograft were non-Hodgkin lymphoma ($11,760 ± $2,236) for the malignant group and thalassemia ($12,915 ± $5,170) for the nonmalignant group. Acute lymphoblastic leukemia ($11,053 ± 2,817) and acute myeloblastic leukemia ($10,251 ± $1,538) were the most frequent indications for HSCT, with 11 cases each. Median out-of-pocket expenses were $1,605, and 1-year follow-up costs amounted to $1,640, adding up to a total cost of $15,749 for the first year. The most expensive components were drugs and laboratory tests.
Applying the cost structure described, HSCT is an affordable option for hematological patients living in a developing country.
PMCID: PMC4391759  PMID: 25746343
Hematopoietic stem cell transplant; HSCT costs; HSCT in developing countries; HSCT cost structure; Out-of-pocket expenses; HSCT cost containment
10.  Patients with Philadelphia-Positive Leukemia with BCR-ABL Kinase Mutations Prior to Allogeneic Transplantation Predominantly Relapse with the Same Mutation 
Despite the successes of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) in improving outcomes in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) and Philadelphia-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph+ ALL), allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) continues to be an important and potentially curative option for selected patients with either disease. After HSCT, TKIs are increasingly being used to treat or prevent disease relapse, and practice patterns suggest that these TKIs are often chosen empirically without regard to pre-HSCT mutation status. We investigated whether ABL kinase domain mutations persist after transplantation, and thus whether pre-HSCT mutation status should inform the selection of post-HSCT TKIs in these patients. We retrospectively analyzed adults who underwent allogeneic HSCT for CML and Ph+ ALL at our institution between 2000 and 2010, and identified subjects who had detectable BCR-ABL transcripts by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), as well as available RNA for Sanger sequencing of the ABL kinase domain, in both the pre- and post-HSCT settings. In total, 95 CML and 20 Ph+ ALL patients with positive PCR transcripts were identified, of which 10 (10.5%) and 4 (20.0%), respectively, were found to have pre-HSCT ABL kinase mutations known to confer TKI resistance. In 9 (64.2%) of these 14 patients, the same kinase mutation was also detectable at an average time of 191 days post-HSCT. Seven (50.0%) of the 14 harboring mutations had relapsed/refractory disease by last follow-up, of which, in retrospect, 6 had received a predictably ineffective TKI within the first 100 days following transplant, based on our mutation analysis. These data support the idea that pre-existing mutations in the ABL kinase domain, frequently associated with resistance to TKIs and prevalent in a transplant population, are persistently detectable in the majority of patients after transplant. We propose that such resistance patterns should be considered when selecting TKIs in the post-HSCT setting, including clinical trials of post-HSCT TKI prophylaxis.
PMCID: PMC4464836  PMID: 25300870
BCR-ABL kinase mutations; Chronic myeloid leukemia; Philadelphia-chromosome acute lymphoblastic leukemia; Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation
11.  Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation in a Very High Risk Group of Patients with the Support of Granulocyte Transfusion 
High risk patients with active fungal infection who had undergone hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) with the support of granulocyte transfusions (GTX) as an adjunct to antifungal agents are reviewed retrospectively. Patients requiring immediate allogeneic HSCT for their primary hematological disorders (two severe aplastic anemia, one T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in second complete remission, one acute myeloid leukemia (AML)-in first complete remission, one T-ALL in refractory relapse) but were denied by other transplant programs due to active invasive fungal infections had undergone HSCT with the support of GTX at the stem cell transplantation unit of Gazi University. Five patients who had undergone six transplants were included in the study and received a total of 38 (3–13) granulocyte transfusions during these six transplants. The median granulocyte concentration was 3.4 × 1011 per apheresis bag. Full clinical and radiological recovery was achieved in three of the five high risk patients with active invasive fungal infection with the combination of antifungal agents and GTX. Even a very high risk patient with aplastic anemia who had undergone two consecutive transplants due to secondary graft failure was also cured of his primary disease despite the presence of multiple pulmonary fungus balls. Three of the five patients with very high risk features due to the underlying hematological disease and the associated active fungal infection were rescued with allogeneic HSCT performed with the support of GTX combined with antifungal agents. Despite the limitations of this report due to its retrospective nature, it suggests that GTX might be an alternative in patients with active fungal infections who otherwise are denied by the transplant programs. However, prospective randomized studies are required to draw a solid conclusion regarding the role of GTX in HSCT recipients in desperate situations such as active fungal infections.
PMCID: PMC3155722  PMID: 22942564
Stem cell transplantation; Granulocyte transfusion; Fungal infection; Anti-fungal treatment
12.  Frequency analysis of TRBV subfamily sjTRECs to characterize T-cell reconstitution in acute leukemia patients after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation 
Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) leads to a prolonged state of immunodeficiency and requires reconstitution of normal T-cell immunity. Signal joint T-cell receptor excision DNA circles (sjTRECs) are markers of developmental proximity to the thymus that have been used to evaluate thymic function related to T-cell immune reconstitution after HSCT. To assess the proliferative history in different T-cell receptor beta variable region (TRBV) subfamilies of T cells after HSCT, expansion of TRBV subfamily-naive T cells was determined by analysis of a series of TRBV-BD1 sjTRECs.
sjTRECs levels were detected by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from 43 Chinese acute leukemia patients who underwent allo-HSCT. Twenty-three TRBV-BD1 sjTRECs were amplified by semi-nested PCR. Sixteen age-matched healthy volunteers served as normal controls.
sjTRECs levels were low or undetectable in the first 6 weeks after allo-HSCT and increased after 8 weeks post HSCT; however, sjTRECs levels at week 20 post-HSCT were still less than normal controls. Frequencies of TRBV subfamily sjTRECs in PBMCs from recipients at week 8 post-HSCT (29.17 ± 20.97%) or at week 16 post-HSCT (38.33 ± 9.03%) were significantly lower than those in donors (47.92 ± 13.82%) or recipients at pre-HSCT (45.83 ± 14.03%). However, frequencies of TRBV subfamily sjTRECs in recipients at week 30 post-HSCT (42.71 ± 21.62%) were similar to those in donors and recipients at pre-HSCT. sjTRECs levels in donors had a positive linear correlation with sjTRECs levels in recipients within 8-12 weeks post-HSCT. Patients with acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) or chronic GVHD had profoundly reduced TRECs levels during the first year post-HSCT. Frequencies of BV22-BD1 sjTRECs and BV23-BD1 sjTRECs in patients with GVHD were significantly lower than those in recipients at pre-HSCT, and the frequencies of BV22-BD1 sjTRECs in patients with GVHD were significantly lower than those in donors.
Reconstitution of thymic output function resulted in a period of immunodeficiency, with low or undetectable TRECs after transplantation, although fludarabine-based dose-reduced conditioning regimens were used. GVHD could affect reconstitution of thymic output function and reduce sjTRECs levels and frequencies of TRBV-BD1 sjTRECs. Low frequency of BV22-BD1 and BV23-BD1 sjTRECs might be associated with GVHD.
PMCID: PMC3094391  PMID: 21513557
13.  NCI First International Workshop on The Biology, Prevention, and Treatment of Relapse After Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: Report from the Committee on the Epidemiology and Natural History of Relapse following Allogeneic Cell Transplantation 
Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (alloHSCT) is increasingly being used for treatment of hematological malignancies, and the immunologic graft-versus-tumor effect (GVT) provides its therapeutic effectiveness. Disease relapse remains a cause of treatment failure in a significant proportion of patients undergoing alloHSCT without improvements over the last 2–3 decades. We summarize here current data and outline future research regarding the epidemiology, risk factors and outcomes of relapse after alloHSCT. While some factors (e.g. disease status at alloHSCT or graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) effects) are common, other disease-specific factors may be unique. The impact of reduced-intensity regimens on relapse and survival still need to be assessed using contemporary supportive care and comparable patient populations. The outcome of patients relapsing after an alloHSCT generally remains poor even though interventions including donor leukocyte infusions can benefit some patients. Trials examining targeted therapies along with improved safety of alloHSCT may result in improved outcomes, yet selection bias necessitates prospective assessment to gauge the real contribution of any new therapies. Ongoing chronic GVHD or other residual post-alloHSCT morbidities may limit the applicability of new therapies. Developing strategies to promptly identify patients as alloHSCT candidates, while malignancy is in more treatable stage, could decrease relapses rates after alloHSCT. Better understanding and monitoring of minimal residual disease post-transplant could lead to novel pre-emptive treatments of relapse. Analyses of larger cohorts through multi-center collaborations or registries remain essential to probe questions not amenable to single center or prospective studies. Studies need to provide data with detail on disease status, prior treatments, biological markers and post-transplant events. Stringent statistical methods to study relapse remain an important area of research. The opportunities for improvement in prevention and management of post alloHSCT relapse are apparent, but clinical discipline in their careful study remains important.
PMCID: PMC2916039  PMID: 20399876
14.  The Impact of Pre-Stem Cell Transplant Ferritin Level on Late Transplant Complications: An Analysis to Determine the Potential Role of Iron Overload on Late Transplant Outcomes 
Iron overload has been associated with increased non-relapse mortality (NRM) in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) undergoing hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Elevated ferritin level pre-HSCT has been used as a marker for iron overload. It is unclear whether the negative effect of iron overload as measured by elevated ferritin level extends beyond the first three months post HSCT, as this would suggest a potential role for active management of iron overload post HSCT.
Sixty-three patients with AML and MDS who underwent an allogeneic HSCT from a sibling or unrelated donor between January to December 2006, had a pre-HSCT ferritin level and were alive and disease free 90 days post HSCT.
Median age was 51. Patients with the lowest pre-HSCT ferritin level (Q1) had a trend towards improved overall survival and progression free survival when compared to patients with higher level (Q2–Q4) (P=0.06, and 0.125). Cumulative incidence of NRM at 2 years was 20 and 30% respectively (P=0.4).
Pre-HSCT ferritin level may still have an impact on HSCT events beyond 3 months post transplant, suggesting a role for research into active management of iron overload with either phlebotomy or chelation.
PMCID: PMC4209589  PMID: 25356072
Ferritin; Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant; Late Transplant Outcome; AML; MDS
15.  Phase 1/2 trial of vorinostat plus tacrolimus and mycophenolate to prevent graft versus host disease following related donor reduced intensity conditioning allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation 
The lancet oncology  2013;15(1):87-95.
Acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains a significant barrier to a more widespread application of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Vorinostat (suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid) is a histone deacetylases (HDAC) inhibitor that has been shown to attenuate GVHD in pre-clinical models. We aimed to study the safety and activity of vorinostat in combination with standard immunoprophylaxis for GVHD prevention in patients undergoing related donor reduced intensity conditioning HSCT.
In this prospective, single-arm phase 1/2 study of vorinostat, we recruited patients with high-risk hematologic malignances at two centers in the USA. We enrolled patients aged 18 years or older who were candidates for a reduced intensity conditioning HSCT and had an available 8/8- or 7/8-Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) matched related donor. Disease status had to be adequately controlled at the time of transplant. All patients received a conditioning regimen consisting of fludarabine 40 mg/m2 daily for four days (total dose 160 mg/m2) and busulfan 3·2 mg/kg daily for two days (total dose 6·4 mg/kg). GVHD prophylaxis consisted of mycophenolate mofetil 1 gram three times daily from day 0 and through day 28 and tacrolimus beginning on day −3 pre-HSCT and tapered beginning on day 56 and discontinued by day 180 post-HSCT in the absence of GVHD. The investigational agent, vorinostat, was initiated on day −10 through day 100 post-HSCT. The primary endpoint of the study was grade 2–4 acute GVHD by day 100. We expected to reduce the incidence to 25% from 42% based on similarly treated patients from the study centers and published literature. Patients were assessed for both toxicity and the primary endpoint if at least 21 days of vorinostat were administered. Patients who received less than 21 days of therapy were still assessed for toxicity and were replaced in accordance to the protocol. The trial is registered with, NCT00810602.
Between March 2008 and February 2013, we enrolled 50 patients evaluable for both toxicity and response. All patients engrafted neutrophils and platelets at expected times post-HSCT. The median percentages of chimerism in whole-blood at day 100 and 1-year were 98% (interquartile range [IQR], 98–100) and 100% (IQR, 100–100), respectively. The primary endpoint of the study was met with a day 100 cumulative incidence of grade 2–4 acute GVHD of 22% (95% cumulative incidence: 13%, 36%). Eight additional patients enrolled were assessed for toxicity only, in accordance with the protocol, because they received less than 21 days of study drug. The most common non-hematologic adverse events were all grade 3 and included electrolyte disturbances (N=15), hyperglycemia (N=10), infections (N=4), mucositis (N=4), and elevated liver enzymes (N=3). There was one grade 4 hypokalemia event and two grade 4 infections. Non-symptomatic thrombocytopenia which occurred after engraftment was the most common hematologic grade 3 or 4 adverse event (N=9), but was transient and all cases resolved swiftly.
Administration of vorinostat in combination with standard GVHD prophylaxis after related donor reduced intensity conditioning HSCT is safe and appears to reduce severe GVHD. Future studies are needed to assess the effect of vorinostat in the prevention of GVHD in broader HSCT settings.
PMCID: PMC4103793  PMID: 24295572
GVHD; hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; HDAC inhibitor; vorinostat
16.  Early Left Ventricular Dysfunction in Children after Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation for Acute Leukemia: A Case Control Study Using Speckle Tracking Echocardiography 
Korean Circulation Journal  2015;45(1):51-58.
Background and Objectives
Cardiovascular complications are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in childhood cancer survivors. Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is a curable therapy for pediatric cancer. However, changes in cardiac function in children after HSCT are not well known. We assessed left ventricular (LV) function in children after HSCT using speckle tracking echocardiography (STE).
Subjects and Methods
Forty consecutive patients with median age of 11.9 years (range, 1.5-16 years) who received HSCT for acute leukemia and had comprehensive echocardiography before and after (median 9.2 month) HSCT were included in this study. The LV function parameters including conventional tissue Doppler imaging (TDI) and STE data were collected from pre- and post-HSCT echocardiography. These data were compared to those of 39 age-matched normal controls.
Compared to normal controls, post HSCT patients had similar (p=0.06) LV ejection fraction. However, the following three LV function parameters were significantly decreased in post HSCT patients: rate-corrected velocity of circumferential fiber shortening (p=0.04), mitral inflow E velocity (p<0.001), and mitral septal annular E' velocity (p=0.03). The following four STE parameters were also significantly decreased in post HSCT patients: LV global circumferential systolic strain (p<0.01), strain rate (SR, p=0.01), circumferential diastolic SR (p<0.01), and longitudinal diastolic SR (p<0.001). There was no significant change in TDI or STE parameters after HSCT compared to pre-HSCT. Patients with anthracycline cumulative dose >400 mg/m2 showed significantly (p<0.05) lower circumferential systolic strain and circumferential diastolic SR.
Subclinical cardiac dysfunction is evident in children after HSCT. It might be associated with pre-HSCT anthracycline exposure with little effect of conditioning regimens. Serial monitoring of cardiac function is mandatory for all children following HSCT.
PMCID: PMC4310980  PMID: 25653704
Childhood leukemia; Stem cell transplantation; Heart function; Speckle tracking; Echocardiography; Strain rate
17.  Pulmonary Dysfunction in Survivors of Childhood Hematologic Malignancies after Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation 
Cancer  2010;116(8):2020-2030.
The number of long-term survivors of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) is increasing; however, few studies have addressed their long-term pulmonary function.
We examined 660 baseline and follow-up pulmonary function tests in 89 long-term survivors of pediatric hematologic malignancies and allo-HSCT.
At least one abnormal lung parameter was seen in 40.4% of baseline tests and developed in 64% of post–allo-HSCT tests (median follow-up: 8.9 years). Abnormal baseline values in ratio of forced expiratory volume in 1 second and forced vital capacity (FEV1/FVC), FEV1, residual volume (RV), functional residual capacity (FRC) and FVC were associated with abnormal post–allo-HSCT values. The following pulmonary function values declined significantly with time: FEV1/FVC, forced mid-expiratory flow (FEF25%–75%), total lung capacity (TLC), diffusion capacity corrected for hemoglobin (DLCOcorr), RV, FRC, and RV/TLC. Older age at the time of allo-HSCT was associated with lower FEV1/FVC, FEF25%–75%, and DLCOcorr and higher RV/TLC. Patients who experienced respiratory events within 1 year post–allo-HSCT had lower FEV1 and FVC values and higher RV/TLC from their baseline PFTs. Female patients had reduced FVC, TLC, and RV values but higher FEV1/FVC. Pulmonary dysfunction was also associated with high-risk hematological malignancies and peripheral blood HSC product.
Abnormal pulmonary functions in allo-HSCT survivors are prevalent, which underscore the need for risk-adapted continual monitoring and improved preventive and management strategies.
PMCID: PMC2919832  PMID: 20186702
childhood; hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; leukemia; pulmonary function; survivor
18.  Long-term complications and side effects after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation: an update 
Blood Cancer Journal  2011;1(4):e16-.
Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) is an effective therapy for various malignant and non-malignant diseases. Many patients have now been followed for two or three decades posttransplant and are presumed to be cured. With the tremendous advances achieved in terms of supportive care, it is reasonable to expect outcomes to improve steadily and consequently increasing numbers of transplant survivors will be facing life after the initial transplant experience. Although long-term allo-HSCT survivors generally enjoy good health, for many others, cure or control of the underlying disease is not accompanied by full restoration of health. The burden of long-term morbidity borne by allo-HSCT survivors is substantial, and long-term follow-up of patients who received allo-HSCT is now widely recommended. Immediate survival is no longer the sole concern after allo-HSCT. The goals should also include complete recovery of the overall health status with normal physical and psychological functioning. Long-term side effects after allo-HSCT include non-malignant organ or tissue dysfunction, changes in quality of life, infections related to abnormal immune reconstitution and secondary cancers. Many of these can be attributed to the deleterious effects of chronic graft-versus-host disease. The aims of this review are to provide an update on the recent research evidence in the field.
PMCID: PMC3255242  PMID: 22829137
allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; graft versus host disease; late effects; survivorship; quality of life; malignant complications
19.  Distress Screening in Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell (HSCT) Caregivers and Patients 
Psycho-oncology  2011;20(6):615-622.
Family caregivers of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) patients are at risk for experiencing significant psychological distress yet screening caregivers has not been well studied.
This analysis explored the psychometric characteristics of the Distress Thermometer (DT) by examining its relationship, sensitivity and specificity relative to the Brief Symptom Inventory 18 (BSI-18) and the Multidimensional Fatigue Symptom Inventory (MFSI) in a sample of allogeneic HSCT caregivers and patients.
Longitudinal data were drawn from an ongoing intervention study for HSCT caregivers and patients. Data from one hundred and fifty-six English-speaking adults where patients (n=65) were receiving their first allogeneic HSCT with at least one adult caregiver (n=91) were eligible for this analysis. Study questionnaires were administered at baseline, initial discharge and 6 weeks following discharge.
Construct validity was supported by significant relationships (p<0.001) between the DT and the BSI-18 GSI and the MFSI-Emotional subscales for caregivers and patients. The diagnostic utility of the DT for patients was good (AUC=.85±.05, p=.001), while for caregivers it was poor (AUC=.61±.08, p=.28). A DT cut point of 5 was supported for patients (sensitivity=1.0, specificity=.68), while for caregivers there was less confidence (sensitivity=.70, specificity=.52). Caregivers and patients reporting a higher number of problems had a greater level of distress (p<0.001).
These findings support the validity of the DT in screening for distress in HSCT caregivers and patients. Although the diagnostic utility of the DT for HSCT caregivers may be limited, understanding factors associated with distress can guide practice for this understudied population.
PMCID: PMC3105246  PMID: 21626610
Cancer; Oncology; Distress Thermometer; Distress screening; Validity; Accuracy
20.  Mental Status Changes after Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation 
Cancer  2009;115(19):4625-4635.
The growing numbers of survivors of innovative cancer treatments such as hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) often report subsequent cognitive difficulties. The purpose of this study is to evaluate and compare neurocognitive changes in patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) or primary myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) after allogeneic HSCT or other therapies.
Prospective cohort study employing serial evaluations of attention, concentration, memory, mood and quality of life in a consecutive sample of 106 eligible patients with CML (n=91) or MDS (n=15) at enrollment, and then 12 and 18 months after HSCT or other therapy.
The three evaluations were completed by 98%, 95%, and 89% of surviving participants, respectively. Among all patients, there was significant improvement in memory over 18 months. For example, the 45 people receiving HSCT (42 with CML, 3 with MDS) compared favorably to those who had other treatment on most measures of neuropsychological function, except they had improved mental health (p=.034), worse physical function (p=.049), and more difficulty with coordination and fine motor speed bilaterally (dominant, p=.005, and non-dominant hands, p=.0019). CML patients overall had improved phonemic fluency (p=.014).
Time and diagnosis may be important factors when assessing neurocognitive and other changes. Complaints about “chemobrain” following HSCT merit further study, as deficits may actually pre-date initiation of treatment and then subsequently improve. Study results could reassure prospective HSCT recipients since it compares favorably to other treatments when mental status side effects are considered.
PMCID: PMC2749960  PMID: 19551887
Chemobrain; HSCT; Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia; Quality of life; Memory; Myelodysplastic Syndrome
21.  Iron Overload in Patients with Acute Leukemia or MDS Undergoing Myeloablative Stem Cell Transplantation 
Patients with hematologic malignancies undergoing allogeneic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) commonly have an elevated serum ferritin prior to HSCT, which has been associated with increased mortality after transplantation. This has led to the suggestion that iron overload is common and deleterious in this patient population. However, the relationship between serum ferritin and parenchymal iron overload in such patients is unknown. We report a prospective study of 48 patients with acute leukemia (AL) or myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) under going myeloablative HSCT, using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to estimate liver iron content (LIC) and cardiac iron. The median (and range) pre-HSCT value of serum ferritin was 1549 ng/ mL (20–6989); serum hepcidin, 59 ng/mL (10–468); labile plasma iron, 0 LPI units (0.0–0.9). Eighty-five percent of patients had hepatic iron overload (HIO), and 42% had significant HIO (LIC ≥5.0 mg/gdw). Only 1 patient had cardiac iron overload. There was a strong correlation between pre-HSCT serum ferritin and estimated LIC (r =.75), which was mostly dependent on prior transfusion history. Serum hepcidin was appropriately elevated in patients with HIO. Labile plasma iron elevation was rare. A regression calibration analysis supported the hypothesis that elevated pre-HSCT LIC is significantly associated with inferior post-HSCT survival. These results contribute to our understanding of the prevalence, mechanism, and consequences of iron overload in HSCT.
PMCID: PMC3954514  PMID: 20854920
Iron overload; Acute myeloid leukemia; Acute lymphoblastic leukemia; Myelodysplastic syndromes; Stem cell transplantation
22.  Stem cell Transplantation for Eradication of Minimal PAncreatic Cancer persisting after surgical Excision (STEM PACE Trial, ISRCTN47877138): study protocol for a phase II study 
BMC Cancer  2014;14:168.
Pancreatic cancer is the third most common cancer related cause of death. Even in the 15% of patients who are eligible for surgical resection the outlook is dismal with less than 10% of patients surviving after 5 years. Allogeneic hematopoietic (allo-HSCT) stem cell transplantation is an established treatment capable of to providing cure in a variety of hematopoietic malignancies. Best results are achieved when the underlying neoplasm has been turned into a stage of minimal disease by chemotherapy. Allo-HSCT in advanced solid tumors including pancreatic cancer have been of limited success, however studies of allo-HSCT in solid tumors in minimal disease situations have never been performed. The aim of this trial is to provide evidence for the clinical value of allo-HSCT in pancreatic cancer put into a minimal disease status by effective surgical resection and standard adjuvant chemotherapy.
The STEM PACE trial is a single center, phase II study to evaluate adjuvant allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in pancreatic cancer after surgical resection. The study will evaluate as primary endpoint 2 year progression free survival and will generate first time state-of-the-art scientific clinical evidence if allo-HSCT is feasible and if it can provide long term disease control in patients with effectively resected pancreatic cancer. Screened eligible patients after surgical resection and standard adjuvant chemotherapy with HLA matched related stem cell donor can participate. Patients without a matched donor will be used as a historical control. Study patients will undergo standard conditioning for allo-HSCT followed by transplantation of allogeneic unmanipulated peripheral blood stem cells. The follow up of the patients will continue for 2 years. Secondary endpoints will be evaluated on 7 postintervention visits.
The principal question addressed in this trial is whether allo-HSCT can change the unfavourable natural course of this disease. The underlying hypothesis is that allo-HSCT has the capacity to provide long-term disease control to an extent otherwise not possible in pancreatic cancer, thereby substantially improving survival of affected patients.
Trial registration
This trial has been registered: ISRCTN47877138
PMCID: PMC4008264  PMID: 24612467
Pancreatic cancer; Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; Minimal residual disease
23.  Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation A Global Perspective 
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) requires significant infrastructure. Little is known on its use and the factors associated with it on a global level.
To determine current use of HSCT, to assess differences in its application and to explore associations of macroeconomic factors with transplant rates on a global level.
Structured worldwide collection of numbers of allogeneic and autologous HSCT by main indication, donor type and stem cell source for the year 2006.
Worldwide Network for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (WBMT), a global non-profit umbrella organization for clinical HSCT.
All patients with an allogeneic or autologous HSCT for any indication transplanted in 2006 within any of the participating countries.
Main Outcome measures
Transplant rates (number of HSCT per 10 million inhabitants) by indication, donor type and country; description of main differences in HSCT use; macroeconomic factors of reporting countries associated with transplant rates.
There were 50’417 first HSCT, 21’516 allogeneic (43%), 28’901 autologous (57%) reported from 1’327 centers in 71 countries for leukemia (17’049 (34%; 89% allogeneic)), lymphoma (27’492 (54%; 87% autologous)), solid tumors (2’925 (6%, 95% autologous)), non-malignant disorder (2’593 (5%; 92% allogeneic)) or, “others” 358 (1%). Use of allogeneic or autologous HSCT, use of unrelated or family donors for allogeneic HSCT and proportions of disease indications varied significantly between countries and continental regions. In linear regression analyses, Government Health Care Expenditures (r2 = 77.33), team density (r2 =76.28), Human Development Index (r2 = 74.36) and Gross National Income /Capita (r2 = 74.04) showed the highest association with transplant rates.
HSCT is an accepted therapy today with different use and needs worldwide. Availability of resources, Governmental support and, access for patients to a team were identified as key factors for higher transplant rates.
PMCID: PMC3219875  PMID: 20424252
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; Global perspective; transplant rates; leukemia; lymphoma; solid tumors; non-malignant disorders; Gross National Income per capita; Human Development Index
24.  NRS2002 assesses nutritional status of leukemia patients undergoing hematopoietic stem cell transplantation 
To discuss whether nutritional risk screening 2002 (NRS2002) is appropriate for nutritional risk screening for leukemia patients before and after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), and whether there are risk differences in other conditions, such as age, gender and matching degree; to find the methods and indicators of nutritional risk screening for these patients before and after HSCT, in order to give timely intervention to guarantee the successful completion of the entire transplantation process.
Nutritional risk of 99 leukemia patients was screened with NRS2002 before and after HSCT. The χ2 test was applied to compare the risk differences between groups such as age, gender and matching degree, while the differences of other enumeration data, such as recent (1-3 months) weight loss, reduced food intake within one week and BMI, were compared by continuity correction.
Of the 99 leukemia patients, 22 cases (22.2%) had nutritional risk before HSCT, while all patients had nutritional risk after HSCT; there is no significant difference in nutritional risk between male and female, and patients of less than 30 years old, not-full matched, recent (1-3 months) weight loss, reduced food intake within a week or BMI <18.5 were more likely to have nutritional risk; and 77 cases (77.8%) had weight loss, among which 49 patients (63.6%) had more than 5% weight loss within one month.
This study showed that leukemia patients should receive the nutritional risk screening conventionally before and after HSCT, and NRS2002 was only appropriate for nutritional risk screening before HSCT. More attention should be paid to the patients less than 30 years old or not-full matched. Weight change was one of the important nutritional indicators for patients after HSCT.
PMCID: PMC3551317  PMID: 23359777
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; leukemia; nutrition; nutrition screening
25.  Treatment of Crohn’s disease complicated with myelodysplastic syndrome via allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation: case report and literature review 
Crohn’s disease (CD) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the gastrointestinal tract arising in individuals with genetic predisposing factors and abnormalities of the immune system. Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), an acquired clonal hematologic disorder, is characterized by peripheral blood cytopenia, dysplastic changes in several types of hematopoietic cells of the bone marrow and peripheral blood, and a high risk of transformation to acute leukemia. CD rarely occurs in combination with MDS, and MDS treatment with hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) has not been frequently reported. We report the case of a 50-year-old Chinese male who presented with abdominal pain, diarrhea, and fatigue. CD was diagnosed by colonoscopy, imaging studies, and pathological examination. He was initially treated with mesalazine and prednisone and thereafter he presented with pancytopenia. MDS (RAEB-I) was diagnosed by bone marrow examination, and karyotyping revealed 47, XY, +8. The patient was treated with thalidomide, andriol, and decitabine. Allogeneic HSCT was performed with a human leukocyte antigen-matched sibling as the donor. The patient is currently well at 14 months after HSCT, without abdominal pain, diarrhea, or fatigue. HSCT may be a promising treatment option for patients with combined CD and MDS.
PMCID: PMC4124245  PMID: 25132866
Crohn’s disease; Inflammatory bowel disease; Myelodysplastic syndrome; Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation

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