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Bone Marrow Transplant. 2000 May;25 Suppl 2:S68-70.

Cord blood transplantation and cord blood bank in Japan.

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  • 1Tokai University Cord Blood Bank, Tokai University School of Medicine, Isehara, Japan.


The first cord blood transplantation (CBT) was performed in a 5-year-old boy with acute myelogenous leukemia from his HLA-identical sibling donor in 1994. Since then there have been 17 related and 131 unrelated CBTs in Japan. Overall survival and disease-free survival (DFS) were over 70% in sibling donor CBT. DFS of unrelated CBT in leukemia and other hematological malignancies was 43%, and OS of UCBT in non-malignant diseases was 63%. HLA disparity between the donor and the recipient did not affect the incidence and severity of acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) or survival. Cell dose was the most important factor for engraftment and survival both in malignant and in non-malignant diseases. The Japanese government has recently established the nationwide cord blood bank network, and eight local cord blood banks are financially supported by the government. 20,000 units of CB are planned to be collected and stored in the next 5 years by this network.

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