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Lancet Oncol. 2008 Sep;9(9):831-9. doi: 10.1016/S1470-2045(08)70180-3. Epub 2008 Aug 8.

Direct intrabone transplant of unrelated cord-blood cells in acute leukaemia: a phase I/II study.

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  • 1Stem Cells and Cell Therapy Centre, San Martino Hospital, Genoa, Italy.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Cord-blood transplants are associated with delayed or failed engraftment in about 20% of adult patients. The aim of this phase I/II study was to establish the safety and efficacy of a new administration route (intrabone) for cord-blood cells, measured by the donor-derived neutrophil and platelet engraftment.

METHODS:

Adult patients with acute leukaemia, for whom an unrelated stem-cell transplantation was indicated and no suitable unrelated human leucocyte antigen (HLA)-matched donor had been identified, were included in the study and underwent a cord-blood transplant in San Martino Hospital, Genoa, Italy. Eight patients were in first complete remission, ten in second complete remission, and 14 had advanced-stage, refractory disease. HLA matching was 5/6, 4/6, and 3/6 for 9, 22, and one patient, respectively. Cord-blood cells were concentrated in four 5-mL syringes, and were infused in the superior-posterior iliac crest under rapid general anaesthesia. Median transplanted cell dose was 2.6 x 10(7)/kg (range 1.4-4.2). The primary endpoint was the probability of neutrophil and platelet recovery after intrabone cord-blood transplantantion. Secondary endpoints included the incidence of acute graft-versus-host disease, relapse, and overall survival. This trial is registered on the ClinicalTrials.gov website, number NCT 00696046.

FINDINGS:

Between March 31, 2006, and Jan 25, 2008, 32 consecutive patients with acute myeloid leukaemia (n=20) or acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (n=12) underwent a cord-blood transplant (median age 36 years [range 18-66]). No complications occurred during or after the intrabone infusion of cells. Four patients with advanced-stage disease died within 12 days of the procedure. Median time to recovery of neutrophils in 28 patients (>/=0.5 x 10(9)/L) was 23 days (range 14-44) and median time to recovery of platelets in 27 patients (>/=20 x 10(9)/L) was 36 days (range 16-64). All patients were fully chimeric from 30 days after transplantation to the last follow-up visit, suggesting an early complete donor engraftment. No patient developed grade III-IV acute graft-versus-host disease. Causes of death were transplant related (n=5), infection (n=7), and relapse (n=4). 16 patients were alive and in haematological remission at a median follow-up of 13 months (range 3-23).

INTERPRETATION:

Our preliminary data suggest that direct intrabone cord-blood transplantation overcomes the problem of graft failure even when low numbers of HLA-mismatched cord-blood cells are transplanted, thus leading to the possibility of use of this technique in a large number of adult patients.

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PMID:
18693069
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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