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Semin Hematol. 1999 Oct;36(4 Suppl 7):95-103.

Bone marrow transplantation: a review.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, University of Washington, and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle 98109, USA.


Bone marrow transplantation has evolved over a period of 50 years. Laboratory observations and animal studies defined the essentials of transplantation biology. The first attempts to transfer these studies to patients met with little success. The definition of the complexities of the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) system made it possible to select compatible sibling donors and more recently unrelated donors. Transplantation of stem cells from marrow, blood, or cord blood is now the treatment of choice for a variety of hematological and genetic diseases. Transplantation using less toxic preparative regimens to induce mixed chimerism makes possible an application to autoimmune diseases. Laboratory and clinical research directed toward induction of tolerance and elimination of malignant cells point the way to a wider application of hematopoietic cell transplantation in the next decade.

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