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Bone Marrow Transplant. 2003 Aug;32 Suppl 1:S57-9.

Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation for severe Crohn's disease.

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Division of Immunotherapy, Northwestern University Medical Center, Chicago, IL 60611, USA.


It is clear that some patients with severe Crohn's disease (CD) fail to respond favorably to the standard treatment, including antibody to Tumor Necrosis Factor alpha (TNFalpha), We have embarked on a unique therapy for this group of patients, intense immune suppression followed by autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). The response to this approach in our first four patients has been excellent, with there being no significant untoward event from the transplantation and with each patient entering clinical remission in terms of the Crohn's Disease Activity Index off all therapy for CD and no diarrhea or abdominal pain. However, some evidence of minor laboratory abnormalities and slight inflammation of the colon on colonoscopic evaluation persist up to 1 year post-transplant. It is suggested that HSCT should be considered a reasonable option for patients who have failed standard CD therapy, although long-term follow-up will be necessary to confirm the duration of the induced clinical remission.

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