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1.  Reduced-dose craniospinal radiotherapy followed by tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation in patients with high-risk medulloblastoma 
Neuro-Oncology  2012;15(3):352-359.
Background
We assessed the feasibility and effectiveness of reduced-dose craniospinal (CS) radiotherapy (RT) followed by tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoSCT) in reducing late adverse effects without jeopardizing survival among children with high-risk medulloblastoma (MB).
Methods
From October 2005 through September 2010, twenty consecutive children aged >3 years with high-risk MB (presence of metastasis and/or postoperative residual tumor >1.5 cm2) were assigned to receive 2 cycles of pre-RT chemotherapy, CSRT (23.4 or 30.6 Gy) combined with local RT to the primary site (total 54.0 Gy), and 4 cycles of post-RT chemotherapy followed by tandem HDCT/autoSCT. Carboplatin-thiotepa-etoposide and cyclophosphamide-melphalan regimens were used for the first and second HDCT, respectively.
Results
Of 20 patients with high-risk MB, 17 had metastatic disease and 3 had a postoperative residual tumor >1.5 cm2 without metastasis. The tumor relapsed/progressed in 4 patients, and 2 patients died of toxicities during the second HDCT/autoSCT. Therefore, 14 patients remained event-free at a median follow-up of 46 months (range, 23−82) from diagnosis. The probability of 5-year event-free survival was 70.0% ± 10.3% for all patients and 70.6% ± 11.1% for patients with metastases. Late adverse effects evaluated at a median of 36 months (range, 12−68) after tandem HDCT/autoSCT were acceptable.
Conclusions
In children with high-risk MB, CSRT dose might be reduced when accompanied by tandem HDCT/autoSCT without jeopardizing survival. However, longer follow-up is needed to evaluate whether the benefits of reduced-dose CSRT outweigh the long-term risks of tandem HDCT/autoSCT.
doi:10.1093/neuonc/nos304
PMCID: PMC3578484  PMID: 23258845
autologous stem cell transplantation; high-dose chemotherapy; late effect; medulloblastoma; radiotherapy
2.  Hematologic Recovery after Tandem High-Dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation in Children with High-Risk Solid Tumors 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2013;28(2):220-226.
Although the number of studies using tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoSCT) for the treatment of high-risk pediatric solid tumors has been increasing, documentation of hematologic recovery after tandem HDCT/autoSCT is very limited. For this reason, we retrospectively analyzed the hematologic recovery of 236 children with high-risk solid tumors who underwent tandem HDCT/autoSCT. The median numbers of CD34+ cells transplanted during the first and second HDCT/autoSCT were 4.3 × 106/kg (range 0.6-220.2) and 4.1 × 106/kg (range 0.9-157.6), respectively (P = 0.664). While there was no difference in neutrophil recovery between the first and second HDCT/autoSCT, platelet and RBC recoveries were significantly delayed in the second HDCT/autoSCT (P < 0.001 and P < 0.001, respectively). Delayed recovery in the second HDCT/autoSCT was more prominent when the number of transplanted CD34+ cells was lower, especially if it was < 2 × 106/kg. A lower CD34+ cell count was also associated with increased RBC transfusion requirements and a higher serum ferritin level after tandem HDCT/autoSCT. More CD34+ cells need to be transplanted during the second HDCT/autoSCT in order to achieve the same hematologic recovery as the first HDCT/autoSCT.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2013.28.2.220
PMCID: PMC3565133  PMID: 23400387
High-Dose Chemotherapy; Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation; CD34+ Cells; Hematologic Recovery; Iron Overload
3.  Iron Overload during Follow-up after Tandem High-Dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation in Patients with High-Risk Neuroblastoma 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2012;27(4):363-369.
Multiple RBC transfusions inevitably lead to a state of iron overload before and after high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoSCT). Nonetheless, iron status during post-SCT follow-up remains unknown. Therefore, we investigated post-SCT ferritin levels, factors contributing to its sustained levels, and organ functions affected by iron overload in 49 children with high-risk neuroblastoma who underwent tandem HDCT/autoSCT. Although serum ferritin levels gradually decreased during post-SCT follow-up, 47.7% of the patients maintained ferritin levels above 1,000 ng/mL at 1 yr after the second HDCT/autoSCT. These patients had higher serum creatinine (0.62 vs 0.47 mg/mL, P = 0.007) than their counterparts (< 1,000 ng/mL). Post-SCT transfusion amount corresponded to increased ferritin levels at 1 yr after the second HDCT/autoSCT (P < 0.001). A lower CD34+ cell count was associated with a greater need of RBC transfusion, which in turn led to a higher serum ferritin level at 1 yr after HDCT/autoSCT. The number of CD34+ cells transplanted was an independent factor for ferritin levels at 1 yr after the second HDCT/autoSCT (P = 0.019). Consequently, CD34+ cells should be transplanted as many as possible to prevent the sustained iron overload after tandem HDCT/autoSCT and consequent adverse effects.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2012.27.4.363
PMCID: PMC3314847  PMID: 22468098
High-Dose Chemotherapy; Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation; Iron Overload; Deferasirox; Iron Chelation Treatment; Neuroblastoma
4.  Treatment of high-risk neuroblastoma 
Korean Journal of Pediatrics  2012;55(4):115-120.
Although high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoSCT) have improved the prognosis for patients with high-risk neuroblastoma (NB), event-free survival rates remain in the range of 30 to 40%, which is unsatisfactory. To further improve outcomes, several clinical trials, including tandem HDCT/autoSCT, high-dose 131I-metaiodobenzylguanidine treatment, and immunotherapy with NB specific antibody, have been undertaken and pilot studies have reported encouraging results. Nonetheless, about half of high-risk NB patients still experience treatment failure and have no realistic chance for cure with conventional treatment options alone after relapse. Therefore, a new modality of treatment is warranted for these patients. In recent years, several groups of investigators have examined the feasibility and effectiveness of reduced-intensity allogeneic stem cell transplantation (RI alloSCT) for the treatment of relapsed/progressed NB. Although a graft-versus-tumor effect has not yet been convincingly demonstrated in the setting of relapsed NB, the strategy of employing RI alloSCT has provided hope that treatment-related mortality will be reduced and a therapeutic benefit will emerge. However, alloSCT for NB is still investigational and there remain many issues to be elucidated in many areas. At present, alloSCT is reserved for specific clinical trials testing the immunomodulatory effect against NB.
doi:10.3345/kjp.2012.55.4.115
PMCID: PMC3346833  PMID: 22574071
Neuroblastoma; High-dose chemotherapy; Allogeneic stem cell transplantation
5.  Efficacy of repeat myeloablative chemotherapy with autologous stem-cell support in multiple myeloma 
Objective:
Induction high-dose chemotherapy followed by myeloablative melphalan (HD-Mel) treatment and autologous hematopoietic stem-cell support (autoSCT) is a standard treatment for multiple myeloma (MM) either upfront or in relapse after conventional treatment. We performed a retrospective analysis of consecutive patients undergoing a late repeat HD-Mel/autoSCT treatment for MM.
Methods:
Data from 24 consecutive patients with MM who underwent a myeloablative treatment with HD-Mel late after completion of upfront first high-dose therapy were assessed for toxicity, response, progression-free survival (PFS) and time to next treatment (TTNT). These data were correlated with the results obtained after the initial high dose therapy and autoSCT.
Results:
A total of 23 patients were treated with novel drugs (lenalidomide, thalidomide, bortezomib) after relapse to initial autoSCT. The median overall survival (OS) of all patients was 90 months. 19 patients (79%) achieved a very good partial remission (VGPR) or complete remission (CR) after initial autoSCT, compared with 42% after late autoSCT. PFS and TTNT were 19 and 24 months after initial compared with 13 and 21 months after late autoSCT. Univariate analysis identified initial response duration and the achievement of a CR/VGPR after the initial transplantation to be associated with prolonged response after repeat autoSCT.
Conclusions:
Our data indicate that late high-dose treatment followed by autoSCT is safe and effective after upfront intensive treatment, can bridge to allogeneic SCT, and encourage collection of an additional graft.
doi:10.1177/2040620711433317
PMCID: PMC3573432  PMID: 23556114
high-dose therapy; multiple myeloma; stem-cell transplantation
6.  High-dose chemotherapy and autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation in the treatment of children and adolescents with Ewing sarcoma family of tumors 
Korean Journal of Pediatrics  2013;56(9):401-406.
Purpose
We performed a pilot study to determine the benefit of high-dose chemotherapy and autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoPBSCT) for patients with Ewing sarcoma family of tumors.
Methods
We retrospectively analyzed the data of patients who received HDCT/autoPBSCT at Korea Cancer Center Hospital. Patients with relapsed, metastatic, or centrally located tumors were eligible for the study.
Results
A total of 9 patients (3 male, 6 female), with a median age at HDCT/autoPBSCT of 13.4 years (range, 7.1 to 28.2 years), were included in this study. Patients underwent conventional chemotherapy and local control either by surgery or radiation therapy, and had achieved complete response (CR, n=7), partial response (n=1), or stable disease (n=1) prior to HDCT/autoPBSCT. There was no transplant-related mortality. However, the median duration of overall survival and event-free survival after HDCT/autoPBSCT were 13.3 months (range, 5.3 to 44.5 months) and 6.2 months (range, 2.1 to 44.5 months), respectively. At present, 4 patients are alive and 5 patients who experienced adverse events (2 metastasis, 2 local recur, and 1 progressive disease) survived for a median time of 2.8 months (range, 0.1 to 10.7 months). The 2-year survival after HDCT/autoPBSCT was 44.4%±16.6% and disease status at the time of HDCT/autoPBSCT tended to influence survival (57.1%±18.7% of cases with CR vs. 0% of cases with non-CR, P=0.07).
Conclusion
Disease status at HDCT/autoPBSCT tended to influence survival. Further studies are necessary to define the role of HDCT/autoPBSCT and to identify subgroup of patients who might benefit from this investigational treatment.
doi:10.3345/kjp.2013.56.9.401
PMCID: PMC3819677  PMID: 24223602
Ewing sarcoma; High-dose chemotherapy; Stem cell transplantation
7.  Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia - Still a Valid Treatment Option, or is the Game Over? 
Chemoimmunotherapy with fludarabine, cyclophosphamide, and rituximab (FCR) has been established as the current standard of care for young and fit patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). In the early nineties of the last century, long before the advent of fludarabine or antibody-based strategies, there was realistic hope that myeloablative therapy followed by autologous stem cell transplantation (autoSCT) might be an effective and potentially curative front-line treatment option for suitable patients with CLL. Since then, several prospective trials have disenthralled this hope: although autoSCT can prolong event and progression-free survival if used as part of early front-line treatment, it does not improve overall survival, while it is associated with an increased risk of late adverse events such as secondary malignancies. In addition, autoSCT lacks the potential to overcome the negative impact of biomarkers that confer resistance to chemotherapy or early relapse. The role of autoSCT has also been explored in the context of FCR, and it was demonstrated that its effect is inferior to the currently established optimal treatment regimen. In view of ongoing attempts to improve on FCR, promising clinical activity of new substances even in relapsed/ refractory CLL patients, exciting novel cell therapy approaches and advantages in the understanding of the disease and detection of Minimal Residual Disease (MRD), autoSCT has lost its place as a standard treatment option for CLL.
doi:10.4084/MJHID.2012.071
PMCID: PMC3507531  PMID: 23205259
8.  Tackling mantle cell lymphoma (MCL): Potential benefit of allogeneic stem cell transplantation 
Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) is a type of non-Hodgkins lymphoma (NHL) associated with poor progression-free and overall survival. There is a high relapse rate with conventional cytotoxic chemotherapy. Intensive combination chemotherapy including rituximab, dose intense CHOP- (cyclophosphamide-doxorubicin-vincristine-prednisone) like regimens, high dose cytarabine, and/or consolidation with autologous stem cell transplant (autoSCT) have shown promise in significantly prolonging remissions. Data from phase II studies show that even in patients with chemotherapy refractory MCL, allogeneic stem cell transplant (alloSCT) can lead to long term disease control. Most patients with MCL are not candidates for myeloablative alloSCT due to their age, comorbidities, and performance status. The advent of less toxic reduced intensity conditioning (RIC) regimens, which rely more on the graft-versus-lymphoma (GVL) effect, have expanded the population of patients who would be eligible for alloSCT. RIC regimens alter the balance of toxicity and efficacy favoring its use. Treatment decisions are complicated by introduction of novel agents which are attractive options for older, frail patients. Further studies are needed to determine the role and timing of alloSCT in MCL. Currently, for selected fit patients with chemotherapy resistant MCL or those who progress after autoSCT, alloSCT may provide long term survival.
PMCID: PMC3781733  PMID: 24198514
mantle cell lymphoma; allogeneic SCT; nonmyeloablative; GVL
9.  Efficacy of High-dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation in Patients with Relapsed Medulloblastoma: A Report on The Korean Society for Pediatric Neuro-Oncology (KSPNO)-S-053 Study 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2010;25(8):1160-1166.
The efficacy and toxicity of high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/ASCT) were investigated for improving the outcomes of patients with relapsed medulloblastoma. A total of 15 patients with relapsed medulloblastoma were enrolled in the KSPNO-S-053 study from May 2005 to May 2007. All patients received approximately 4 cycles of salvage chemotherapy after relapse. Thirteen underwent HDCT/ASCT; CTE and CM regimen were employed for the first HDCT (HDCT1) and second HDCT (HDCT2), respectively, and 7 underwent HDCT2. One transplant related mortality (TRM) due to veno-occlusive disease (VOD) occurred during HDCT1 but HDCT2 was tolerable with no further TRM. The 3-yr overall survival probability and event-free survival rates ±95% confidence intervals (CI) were 33.3±12.2% and 26.7% ±11.4%, respectively. When analysis was confined to only patients who had a complete response (CR) or partial response (PR) prior to HDCT, the probability of 3-yr overall survival rates ±95% CI was 40.0±15.5%. No patients with stable disease (SD) or progressive disease (PD) survived. Survival rates from protocol KSPNO-S-053 are encouraging and show that tumor status prior to HDCT/ASCT is an important factor to consider for improving survival rates of patients with relapsed medulloblastoma.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2010.25.8.1160
PMCID: PMC2908784  PMID: 20676326
Recurrence; Medulloblastoma; Transplantation, Autologous; Tandem; Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation
10.  High-dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Rescue in Patients with High-risk Stage 3 Neuroblastoma: 10-Year Experience at a Single Center 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2009;24(4):660-667.
High-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell rescue (HDCT/ASCR) was applied to improve the prognosis of patients with high-risk stage 3 neuroblastoma. From January 1997 to December 2006, 28 patients were newly diagnosed as stage 3 neuroblastoma. Nine of 11 patients with N-myc amplification and 5 of 17 patients without N-myc amplification (poor response in 2 patients, persistent residual tumor in 2 and relapse in 1) underwent single or tandem HDCT/ASCR. Patients without high-risk features received conventional treatment modalities only. While 8 of 9 patients underwent single HDCT/ASCR and the remaining one patient underwent tandem HDCT/ASCR during the early study period, all 5 patients underwent tandem HDCT/ASCR during the late period. Toxicities associated with HDCT/ASCR were tolerable and there was no treatment-related mortality. While the tumor relapsed in two of eight patients in single HDCT/ASCR group, all six patients in tandem HDCT/ASCR group remained relapse free. The 5-yr event-free survival (EFS) from diagnosis, in patients with N-myc amplification, was 71.6±14.0%. In addition, 12 of 14 patients who underwent HDCT/ASCR remained event free resulting in an 85.1±9.7% 5-yr EFS after the first HDCT/ASCR. The present study demonstrates that HDCT/ASCR may improve the survival of patients with high-risk stage 3 neuroblastoma.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2009.24.4.660
PMCID: PMC2719186  PMID: 19654949
Neuroblastoma; High-dose Chemotherapy; Autologous Stem Cell Rescue; Prognosis; N-myc
11.  Reduced-dose craniospinal radiotherapy followed by high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell rescue for children with newly diagnosed high-risk medulloblastoma or supratentorial primitive neuroectodermal tumor 
The Korean Journal of Hematology  2010;45(2):120-126.
Background
In this study, we investigated the effects of reduced-dose craniospinal radiotherapy (CSRT) followed by tandem high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) with autologous stem cell rescue (ASCR) in children with a newly diagnosed high-risk medulloblastoma (MB) or supratentorial primitive neuroectodermal tumor (sPNET).
Methods
Between March 2005 and April 2007, patients older than 3 years with a newly diagnosed high-risk MB or sPNET were enrolled. The patients received two cycles of pre-RT chemotherapy consisting of cisplatin, etoposide, vincristine, and cyclophosphamide (cycle A), and carboplatin, etoposide, vincristine, and ifosphamide (cycle B), followed by CSRT with 23.4 Gy and local RT with 30.6 Gy. After four cycles of post-RT chemotherapy (cycles A, B, A, and B), tandem double HDCT with ASCR was performed.
Results
A total of 13 patients (MB=11, sPNET=2) were enrolled. Of these, one patient progressed, one patient died of septic shock after the second cycle of B, and one patient relapsed after the third cycle of B. The 3-year event-free survival (EFS) rate of the patients intended for HDCT was 76.9%, whereas the 3-year EFS rate of the patients who received HDCT was 100%. No treatment-related mortality occurred during HDCT.
Conclusion
Although the follow-up period was short and the patient cohort was small in size, the results of this study are encouraging. The limited toxicity and favorable EFS rate observed in children treated with reduced-dose CSRT followed by HDCT and ASCR warrant further exploration in a larger study population.
doi:10.5045/kjh.2010.45.2.120
PMCID: PMC2983022  PMID: 21120191
Radiotherapy; High-dose chemotherapy; Autologous stem cell transplantation; Medulloblastoma; Supratentorial primitive neuroectodermal tumor; Children
12.  Addition of lenalidomide to rituximab, ifosfamide, carboplatin, etoposide (RICER) in first-relapse/primary refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma 
British Journal of Haematology  2014;166(1):77-83.
Relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is associated with a poor prognosis. Outcomes are particularly poor following immunochemotherapy failure or relapse within 12 months of induction. We conducted a Phase I/II trial of lenalidomide plus RICE (rituximab, ifosfamide, carboplatin, and etoposide) (RICER) as a salvage regimen for first-relapse or primary refractory DLBCL. Dose-escalated lenalidomide was combined with RICE every 14 d. After three cycles of RICER, patients with chemosensitive disease underwent stem cell collection and consolidation with BEAM [BCNU (carmustine), etoposide, cytarabine, melphalan] followed by autologous stem cell transplantation (autoSCT). Patients who recovered from autoSCT toxicities within 90 d initiated maintenance treatment with lenalidomide 25 mg daily for 21 d every 28 d for 12 months. No dose-limiting or unexpected toxicities occurred with lenalidomide 25 mg plus RICE. Grade 3/4 haematological toxicities resolved appropriately, and planned dose density and dose intensity of RICER were preserved. No lenalidomide or RICE dose reductions were required in any of the three cycles. After two cycles of RICER, nine of 15 patients (60%) achieved a complete response, and two achieved a partial response (13%). Combining lenalidomide with RICE is feasible, and results in promising response rates (particularly complete response rates) in high-risk DLBCL patients.
doi:10.1111/bjh.12846
PMCID: PMC4283736  PMID: 24661044
lenalidomide; diffuse large B-cell lymphoma; rituximab; salvage; bone marrow transplantation
13.  Treatment of young children with CNS-primitive neuroectodermal tumors/pineoblastomas in the prospective multicenter trial HIT 2000 using different chemotherapy regimens and radiotherapy 
Neuro-Oncology  2012;15(2):224-234.
Background
Especially in young children, primitive neuroectodermal tumors of the central nervous system (CNS-PNET) and pineoblastomas are associated with an unfavorable outcome, and only a few prospective trials have been conducted thus far.
Methods
From January 2001 through January 2005, 17 eligible children aged <4 years with CNS-PNET not otherwise specified (n = 8), ependymoblastoma (n = 1), or pineoblastoma (n = 8) confirmed by central review were prospectively treated in the trial HIT 2000. In nonmetastatic disease (n = 11), up to 5 postoperative cycles of HIT-SKK systemic multiagent chemotherapy (8 months duration), followed by craniospinal radiotherapy (CSI), were given. In metastatic disease (M1-M3, n = 6), treatment consisted of a shorter induction chemotherapy (2–3 months) with carboplatin and etoposide, followed by tandem high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) in case of good response to induction. During induction and HDCT, patients received intraventricular methotrexate. CSI was applied to all patients with poor response to induction or residual disease after HDCT and was optional for patients with residual disease before HDCT.
Results
Five-year event-free survival and overall survival rates ± standard error for all eligible patients were 24% ± 10% and 40% ± 12%, respectively (median follow-up of survivors: 8.3 years). Only one patient with nonmetastatic disease remained free of relapse/progressive disease during induction. Three of 6 patients with metastatic disease responded to induction and received tandem-HDCT, followed by preventive CSI, and remain in continuous complete remission.
Conclusions
Short intensive induction chemotherapy followed by tandem-HDCT in young children with CNS-PNET/pineoblastomas seems to be superior to the prolonged and less intensive induction regimen.
doi:10.1093/neuonc/nos292
PMCID: PMC3548584  PMID: 23223339
brain tumors, chemotherapy; pineoblastoma; primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET); radiotherapy; young children
14.  Impact of Autologous and Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation in Peripheral T-Cell Lymphomas 
Advances in Hematology  2010;2010:320624.
Peripheral T/NK-cell lymphomas (PTCLs) are rare malignancies characterized by poor prognosis. So far, no standard therapy has been established, due to the lack of randomised studies. High-dose therapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDT-autoSCT) have shown good feasibility with low toxicity in retrospective studies. In relapsing and refractory PTCL several comparison analyses suggest similar efficacy for PTCL when compared with aggressive B-cell lymphoma. In the upfront setting, prospective data show promising results with a long-lasting overall survival in a relevant subset of patients. Achieving a complete remission at transplantation seems to be the most important prognostic factor. Allogeneic stem cell transplantation (alloSCT) has been investigated only as salvage treatment. Especially when using reduced intensity conditioning regimen, eligible patients seem to benefit from this approach. To define the role for upfront stem cell transplantation a randomised trial by the German High-Grade Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Study Group comparing HDT-autoSCT and alloSCT will be initiated this year.
doi:10.1155/2010/320624
PMCID: PMC3022174  PMID: 21253465
15.  Atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor: improved long-term survival with an intensive multimodal therapy and delayed radiotherapy. The Medical University of Vienna Experience 1992–2012 
Cancer Medicine  2013;3(1):91-100.
Atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumors (ATRTs) are recently defined highly aggressive embryonal central nervous system tumors with a poor prognosis and no definitive guidelines for treatment. We report on the importance of an initial correct diagnosis and disease-specific therapy on outcome in 22 consecutive patients and propose a new treatment strategy. From 1992 to 2012, nine patients initially diagnosed correctly as ATRT (cohort A, median age 24 months) were treated according to an intensive multimodal regimen (MUV-ATRT) consisting of three 9-week courses of a dose-dense regimen including doxorubicin, cyclophosphamide, vincristine, ifosfamide, cisplatin, etoposide, and methotrexate augmented with intrathecal therapy, followed by high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) and completed with local radiotherapy. Thirteen patients were treated differently (cohort B, median age 30 months) most of whom according to protocols in use for their respective diagnoses. As of July 2013, 5-year overall survival (OS) and event-free survival (EFS) for all 22 consecutive patients was 56.3 ± 11.3% and 52.9 ± 11.0%, respectively. For MUV-ATRT regimen-treated patients (cohort A) 5-year OS was 100% and EFS was 88.9 ± 10.5%. For patients treated differently (cohort B) 5-year OS and EFS were 28.8 ± 13.1%. All nine MUV-ATRT regimen-treated patients are alive for a median of 76 months (range: 16–197), eight in first complete remission. Our results compare favorably to previously published data. The drug combination and sequence used in the proposed MUV-ATRT regimen appear to be efficacious in preventing early relapses also in young children with M1–M3 stage disease allowing postponement of radiotherapy until after HDCT.
doi:10.1002/cam4.161
PMCID: PMC3930393  PMID: 24402832
ATRT; delayed local radiotherapy; high-dose chemotherapy; improved survival; multimodal therapy
16.  Clinical characteristics and treatment outcomes of children with anaplastic large cell lymphoma: a single center experience 
Blood research  2014;49(4):246-252.
Background
Anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) is uncommon in children, accounting for approximately 15% of all cases of childhood non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Despite many studies attempting new treatment strategies, treatment outcomes have not significantly improved, and the optimal treatment for pediatric ALCL has not been established.
Methods
The records of newly diagnosed ALCL patients at our institute between July 1998 and April 2013 were reviewed. We evaluated the general characteristics of the patients, chemotherapy regimens, overall survival (OS) rates, and event-free survival (EFS) rates.
Results
Twenty-eight ALCL patients were eligible. The median age at diagnosis was 10.8 years. Lymph node involvement was the most common presentation (79%). CCG-5941, a multi-agent T-cell lineage chemotherapy, was the predominant treatment regimen (57%). The five-year OS and EFS rates were 88% and 69%, respectively. Stage, the presence of B symptoms, lung involvement, and bone marrow involvement were significant prognostic factors for EFS (P=0.02, 0.01, 0.01, and 0.02, respectively). Eight patients relapsed, and three died during the study period. Four of the eight patients who relapsed were treated with high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT-ASCT). Two of the four who had undergone HDCT-ASCT developed secondary relapses and were subsequently treated with allogeneic SCT or brentuximab.
Conclusion
We found that treatment outcomes with multi-agent chemotherapy in children with ALCL were similar to those of previous reports, and that relapsed patients could be salvaged with HDCT-ASCT or allogeneic SCT. A prospective, larger cohort study is warranted to define the optimal treatment for pediatric ALCL.
doi:10.5045/br.2014.49.4.246
PMCID: PMC4278006  PMID: 25548758
Anaplastic large cell lymphoma; Childhood; Prognosis; Relpase
17.  High-dose chemotherapy and stem cell transplantation for advanced testicular cancer 
Expert Review of Anticancer Therapy  2011;11(7):1091-1103.
High-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) with autologous stem cell support has been studied in both the salvage and first-line setting in advanced germ cell tumor (GCT) patients with poor-risk features. While early studies reported significant treatment-related mortality, introduction of peripheral blood stem cell transplantation, recombinant growth factors and better supportive care have decreased toxicity; and in more recent reports treatment-related deaths are observed in <3% of patients. Two to three cycles of high-dose carboplatin and etoposide is the standard backbone for HDCT, given with or without additional agents including ifosfamide, cyclophosphamide and paclitaxel. Three large randomized Phase III trials have failed to show a benefit of HDCT over conventional-dose chemotherapy (CDCT) in the first-line treatment of patients with intermediate- or poor-risk advanced GCT, and to date the routine use of HDCT has been reserved for the salvage setting. Several prognostic models have been developed to help predict outcome of salvage HDCT, the most recent of which applies to both CDCT and HDCT in the initial salvage setting. Patients that relapse after HDCT are usually considered incurable, and additional therapy is provided with palliative intent.
doi:10.1586/era.10.231
PMCID: PMC3253700  PMID: 21806332
chemotherapy; germ cell tumors; high-dose chemotherapy; stem cell transplantation; testicular cancer
18.  Long-term Outcome of Patients with Metastatic Breast Cancer Treated with High-Dose Chemotherapy and Transplantation of Purified Autologous Hematopoietic Stem Cells 
Metastatic breast cancer remains a major treatment challenge. The use of high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) with rescue by autologous mobilized peripheral blood (MPB) is controversial, in part due to contamination of MPB by circulating tumor cells. CD34+Thy- 1+ selected hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) represent a graft source with a greater than 250,000-fold reduction in cancer cells. Here, we present the long-term outcome of a pilot study determining feasibility and engraftment using HDCT and purified HSC in patients with metastatic breast cancer. Twenty-two patients who had been treated with standard chemotherapy were enrolled into a phase I/II trial between 12/1996 to 02/1998, and underwent HDCT followed by rescue with CD34+Thy-1+ HSC isolated from autologous MPB. More than 12 years after the end of the study 23% (5/22) of HSC recipients are alive, 18% (4/22) free of recurrence with normal hematopoietic function. Median PFS was 16 months and median OS was 60 months. Retrospective comparison with 74 patients transplanted between 02/1995 and 06/1999 with the identical HDCT regimen but rescue with unmanipulated MPB show that 9% of patients are alive, and 7% without disease. Median PFS was 10 months and median OS was 28 months. In conclusion, cancer-depleted HSC following HDCT resulted in better than expected 12- 14 year PFS and OS in a cohort of metastatic breast cancer patients. These data prompt us to look once again at purified HSC transplantation in a protocol powered to test for efficacy in advanced stage breast cancer patients.
doi:10.1016/j.bbmt.2011.07.009
PMCID: PMC4113088  PMID: 21767515
19.  Consolidative high-dose chemotherapy after conventional-dose chemotherapy as first salvage treatment for male patients with metastatic germ cell tumours 
Introduction:
Some men with metastatic germ cell tumours that have progressed after response to initial cisplatin-based combination chemotherapy are cured with conventional dose first salvage chemotherapy (CDCT) – however, many are not. High-dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell rescue (HDCT) may be of value in these patients. Prognosis has recently been better defined by International Prognostic Factor Study Group (IPFSG) prognostic factors. HDCT after response to CDCT has been offered at our institution over the past two decades. We retrospectively assessed the validity of the IPFSG prognostic factors in our patients and evaluated the value of HDCT.
Methods:
We identified eligible men with metastatic germ cell tumour progressed after at least 3 cycles of cisplatin-based chemotherapy and treated with cisplatin-based CDCT alone or with carboplatin-based HDCT. We also collected their clinical data. Patients were classified into risk groups using IPFSG factors, and progression-free and overall survival factors were analyzed and compared in patients treated with CDCT alone and with HDCT.
Results:
We identified 38 eligible first salvage patients who had received a median of 4 cycles (range, 1 to 7 cycles) of CDCT. Twenty patients received CDCT alone and 18 patients received CDCT plus HDCT. The overall median progression- free survival was 24.6 months (95%CI, 7.3 to 28.7 months) and overall median overall survival was 34.6 months (95%CI, 17.2 to 51.3 months). Distribution by IPFSG category and 2-year progression- free survival and 3-year overall survival rates within each risk category were very similar to the IPFSG results. There were two toxic deaths with CDCT and none with HDCT. Overall, patients treated with CDCT plus HDCT had improved progression- free survival and overall survival.
Conclusions:
The IPFSG prognostic risk factors appeared valid in our patient population. The safety of HDCT with etoposide and carboplatin was confirmed. HDCT was associated with improved progression- free survival and overall survival outcomes, consistent with observations of the IPFSG group. Ideally, the value of optimal HDCT should be determined in comparison to optimal CDCT as first salvage therapy in men with metastatic germ cell tumour with a randomized trial.
doi:10.5489/cuaj.11233
PMCID: PMC3328550  PMID: 22511417
20.  Treatment of Peripheral T-cell Lymphoma: Are We Data Driven or Driving the Data? 
Opinion Statement
Peripheral T-cell lymphomas (PTCL) are a group of uncommon and heterogeneous malignancies arising from a post-thymic or mature T-lymphocyte. The treatment of PTCL remains a challenging endeavor. Compared to the more common aggressive B-cell lymphomas, more patients with PTCL will be refractory to initial therapy and those who achieve responses will often have shorter progression free survival. Despite retrospective data suggesting that anthracycline based multi-agent chemotherapy regimens may not provide a benefit compared to non-anthracycline regimens, non-anthracycline based regimens, with the notable exception of L-asparaginase regimens for extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, have been disappointing so far. Based on phase II evidence and subset analyses available, we believe that the addition of etoposide to standard regimens and consolidation of first remissions with autologous stem cell transplantation (autoSCT) provides the best outcome in patients with PTCL and currently use CHOEP followed by ASCT for eligible patients with the common PTCL subtype: PTCL-NOS, AITL, and ALK negative ALCL. For those with ALK positive ALCL standard CHOP or CHOEP is appropriate with consideration of ASCT only for those with high-risk disease. Other strategies to incorporate additional agents such as with dose adjusted-EPOCH or sequential CHOP-ICE regimens are logical options; however, they lack the supporting literature of CHOEP. While the above recommendation is our current off-protocol approach, with the possible exception of low risk ALK positive ALCL, none of these choices is supported by strong enough data to supplant a well-conceived clinical trial as the truly preferred strategy in PTCL.
The novel agents, romidepsin, pralatrexate and brentuximab vedotin, are currently approved in the relapsed/refractory setting. These agents are being studied as additions or substitutions for other agents in up-front multi-agent chemotherapy regimens. In the relapsed/refractory setting both pralatrexate and romidepsin remain well-studied choices with some patients achieving a response with durability. Clinical trials of new agents in PTCL continue to be a valuable option and an important part of routine patient management as progressive disease is often seen. Lastly, we believe patients with relapsed/refractory PTCL should be considered for allogeneic stem cell transplantation if a suitable response is demonstrated and a willing donor is available.
doi:10.1007/s11864-013-0232-x
PMCID: PMC3938283  PMID: 23568456
Peripheral; non-cutaneous; T-cell lymphoma; transplantation; autologous; relapsed; refractory
21.  Immunotherapy with low-dose recombinant interleukin 2 after high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation in neuroblastoma. 
British Journal of Cancer  1998;78(4):528-533.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate in a phase I-II trial whether low doses of recombinant human interleukin 2 (rHuIL-2) over a prolonged period of time are safe and effective in eradicating or controlling minimal residual disease in children with neuroblastoma given high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) and autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT). From January 1992 to July 1996, 17 consecutive patients, with either stage IV or relapsed neuroblastoma, were enrolled. Patients received rHuIL-2 after a median time interval (min-max) of 105 days (56-153) after HDCT and ASCT. The protocol consisted of 2 'priming' courses of rHuIL-2 at escalating doses administered intravenously at 72-h intervals, followed by 'maintenance' with 11 monthly and six bimonthly boosting 5-day courses administered subcutaneously on an outpatient basis. At April 1997, 7 out of the 17 patients had completed the treatment schedule, four had discontinued treatment because of toxicity and four because of relapse; the remaining two patients are still on treatment, having completed 15 courses. Expansion of T lymphocytes, together with an increase in both natural killer cells and in activated T lymphocytes was evidenced. After a median (min-max) follow-up time of 30 (16-64) months, 12 out of 17 patients are alive and well. Two patients relapsed and died 14 and 35 months after transplant. Three patients are alive after having relapsed at 41, 21 and 13 months. The actuarial 2-year event-free survival and overall survival are 67% and 92% respectively. Intermittent administration of low doses of rHuIL-2 given for a long period of time is well tolerated and seems capable of controlling minimal residual disease after HDCT and ASCT in children with high-risk neuroblastoma.
PMCID: PMC2063104  PMID: 9716039
22.  Efficacy of Tandem High-Dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Rescue in Patients Over 1 Year of Age with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma: The Korean Society of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology Experience Over 6 Years (2000-2005) 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2010;25(5):691-697.
The efficacy of tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell rescue (HDCT/ASCR) was investigated in patients with high-risk neuroblastoma. Patients over 1 yr of age who were newly diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma from January 2000 to December 2005 were enrolled in The Korean Society of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology registry. All patients who were assigned to receive HDCT/ASCR at diagnosis were retrospectively analyzed to investigate the efficacy of single or tandem HDCT/ASCR. Seventy and 71 patients were assigned to receive single or tandem HDCT/ASCR at diagnosis. Fifty-seven and 59 patients in the single or tandem HDCT group underwent single or tandem HDCT/ASCR as scheduled. Twenty-four and 38 patients in the single or tandem HDCT group remained event free with a median follow-up of 56 (24-88) months. When the survival rate was analyzed according to intent-to-treat at diagnosis, the probability of the 5-yr event-free survival±95% confidence intervals was higher in the tandem HDCT group than in the single HDCT group (51.2±12.4% vs. 31.3±11.5%, P=0.030). The results of the present study demonstrate that the tandem HDCT/ASCR strategy is significantly better than the single HDCT/ASCR strategy for improved survival in the treatment of high-risk neuroblastoma patients.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2010.25.5.691
PMCID: PMC2858826  PMID: 20436703
Neuroblastoma; High-dose Chemotherapy; Transplantation, Autologous
23.  Clinical Characteristics and Treatment Results of Pediatric Osteosarcoma: The Role of High Dose Chemotherapy with Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation 
Purpose
In this study, we investigated the clinical characteristics and treatment results of osteosarcoma during the past 7 years, and evaluated the role of high dose chemotherapy (HDCT) with autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT).
Materials and Methods
We retrospectively analyzed the clinical data of patients who were diagnosed as osteosarcoma at our center from January, 2000 to December, 2007.
Results
The 5-year overall survival and event-free survival of the patients were 72.6% and 55.9%, respectively. Seventeen (41.5%) patients showed disease progression during treatment or relapse after the end of treatment. The patients who had metastasis at diagnosis or who had a lower grade of necrosis after neoadjuvant chemotherapy showed decreased overall and event-free survival. Four patients received ASCT after HDCT, and 3 of them are alive without disease.
Conclusions
The patients who relapsed or had refractory osteosarcoma or who had metastasis at diagnosis or a lower grade of necrosis after neoadjuvant chemotherapy showed poor prognosis. HDCT with ASCT could be an alternative treatment option for these patients.
doi:10.4143/crt.2008.40.4.172
PMCID: PMC2697476  PMID: 19688126
Osteosarcoma; Autologous stem cell transplantation; High dose chemotherapy; Pediatrics
24.  Prognostic Value of EMT-Circulating Tumor Cells in Metastatic Breast Cancer Patients Undergoing High-Dose Chemotherapy with Autologous Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation 
Journal of Cancer  2012;3:369-380.
Background: Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are an independent prognostic factor in metastatic breast cancer (MBC) patients treated by conventional dose chemotherapy. The aim of this study was to determine the role of CTCs and CTCs undergoing epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in metastatic breast cancer. We used the platform of high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) and autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (AHSCT) to study the CTCs and CTCs with EMT.
Patients and methods: CTCs were enumerated in 21 MBC patients before apheresis and 1 month after AHSCT. CD34-depleted apheresis products were analyzed for CD326+ epithelial and Aldefluor+ cancer stem cells (CSC) by flow cytometry and were depleted of CD45+ cells and assessed for EMT-inducing transcription factors (EMT-TF) by quantitative RT-PCR.
Results: Patients with ≥ 5 CTCs/7.5 mL of peripheral blood 1 month after AHSCT had shorter progression-free survival (PFS) (P=0.02) and overall survival (OS) (P=0.02). Patients with apheresis products containing high percentages of CD326+ epithelial cells or overexpressing EMT-TF had shorter PFS. In multivariate analysis, low percentage of CD326+ epithelial cells and response to HDCT with AHSCT were associated with longer PFS, whereas lower CTCs after AHSCT was associated with longer OS. High CTCs, 1 month after AHSCT correlated with shorter PFS and OS in MBC patients undergoing HDCT and AHSCT, while CTCs with EMT and CSCs phenotype in apheresis products are associated with relapse.
Conclusion: Our data suggest that CTC and CTCs with EMT are prognostic in MBC patients undergoing HDCT followed by AHSCT.
doi:10.7150/jca.5111
PMCID: PMC3471078  PMID: 23074378
metastatic breast cancer; circulating tumor cells; epithelial-mesenchymal transition; high-dose chemotherapy; autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.
25.  Autologous stem-cell transplantation in refractory autoimmune diseases after in vivo immunoablation and ex vivo depletion of mononuclear cells 
Arthritis Research  2000;2(4):327-336.
Autoimmune diseases that are resistant to conventional treatment cause severe morbidity and even mortality. In the present study we demonstrate that complete remissions can be achieved in refractory polychondritis and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), even at advanced stage, with the use of autologous stem-cell transplantation (SCT). Remissions persisted after reconstitution of the immune system. In the treatment of advanced systemic sclerosis (SSc), stable disease may be achieved with autologous SCT.
Introduction:
Patients with persistently active autoimmune diseases are considered to be candidates for autologous SCT. We performed a phase 1/2 study in a limited number of patients who were refractory to conventional immunosuppressive treatment. Following a period of uncontrolled disease activity for at least 6 months, autologous SCT was performed, after in vivo immunoablation and ex vivo depletion of mononuclear cells.
Aims:
To investigate feasibility, toxicity and efficacy of the treatment, and the incidence of emergent infections.
Methods:
Seven patients (aged between 23 and 48 years) were included in the single-centre trial: one had relapsing polychondritis, three had treatment-refractory SLE and three patients had SSc. Stem-cell mobilization was achieved by treatment with moderate-dose cyclophosphamide (2 g/m2; in terms of myelotoxic side effects or myelosuppression) and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF). CD34- cells of the leukapheresis products were removed by high-gradient magnetic cell sorting. After stem-cell collection, immunoablation was performed with high-dose cyclophosphamide (200 mg/kg body weight) and antithymocyte globulin (ATG; 90 mg/kg body weight). Autologous SCT was followed by reconstitution of the immune system, which was monitored by six-parameter flow cytometry and standard serology. The trial fulfilled the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) and the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT) guidelines for blood and bone marrow stem-cell transplants in autoimmune disease.
Results:
Among the seven patients studied, the patient with relapsing polychondritis and the patients with SLE were successfully treated and remained in complete remission during a follow up of 10-21 months. Remission persisted despite reconstitution of the immune system, resulting in high numbers of effector-/memory-type T-helper lymphocytes and increasing populations in the naïve T-cell compartment. Before autologous SCT, one of the patients with SLE had a long-lasting secondary antiphospholipid syndrome, with high anticardiolipin antibodies and thromboembolic events. After autologous SCT the antiphospholipid antibodies became negative, and no thrombosis occurred during follow up. Two of the patients with SSc were unaffected by treatment with autologous SCT for 6 or 13 months. The other patient with SSc died 2 days after autologous SCT because of cardiac failure.
During stem-cell mobilization with G-CSF, flares of autoimmune disease were seen in the patient with polychondritis and in one patient with SLE. The strategy utilized for depletion of CD34- cells led to a reduction by 4.5-5 log of contaminating CD3+ cells in the transplant. T-cell add-back was required in the patient with polychondritis and in one patient with SLE to provide a dose of 1×104 CD3+ cells/kg body weight for the transplant.
Discussion:
In vivo immunoablation in combination with autologous SCT after ex vivo depletion of CD34- cells can block the autoimmune process in relapsing polychondritis or SLE without incidence of severe infections. The remissions were achieved in patients with advanced disease that was refractory to previous intensive immunosuppressive therapy. The present results do not indicate that large-scale contamination of the stem-cell transplant with autoreactive cells after selection for CD34+cells occurred. After the preparative regimen, the application of G-CSF was avoided, because induction of flares of the autoimmune disease were noticed during the mobilization of stem cells. In SSc patients, distinct remissions were not observable after autologous SCT; the serological and clinical status did not improve. Follow-up periods of more than 12 months may be required to identify successful treatment with autologous SCT in SSc patients. Among the various autoimmune diseases the efficacy of autologous SCT appears to be dependent on the underlying pathophysiology. The results of the present phase 1/2 study suggest that patients with advanced stage SSc should not be treated with autologous SCT, until the reasons for the lack of response and the possible mortality due to cardiac complications are identified. The observation of flares of autoimmune disease after application of G-CSF emphasizes the need for critical evaluation of the role of G-CSF in immunoablative regimens.
PMCID: PMC17815  PMID: 11056673
autologous stem-cell transplantation; polychondritis; refractory autoimmune disease; systemic lupus erythematosus; systemic sclerosis

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