Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 2005 Sep;11(9):680-7.

Pilot trial on the use of etanercept and methylprednisolone as primary treatment for acute graft-versus-host disease.

Author information

Department of Internal Medicine, Blood and Marrow Stem Cell Transplantation Program, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA.


Clinical and preclinical data indicate that tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha is an important mediator of acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD) after allogeneic bone marrow transplantation. We completed a study using etanercept, a fusion protein capable of neutralizing TNF-alpha, for the initial treatment of aGVHD. Etanercept (25 mg subcutaneously) was administered twice weekly for 16 doses, along with methylprednisolone (2 mg/kg) and tacrolimus for biopsy-proven aGVHD. Twenty patients with a median age of 47 years (range, 8-63 years) were enrolled. Fourteen patients with grade II aGVHD (11 family donors and 3 unrelated donors) and 6 patients with grade III aGVHD (3 family donors and 3 unrelated donors) were treated. Twelve patients completed 16 doses of therapy, and 8 received 5 to 15 doses. Reasons for not completing all doses of etanercept included progression of aGVHD (n = 4), relapsed leukemia (n = 2), progression of pulmonary and central nervous system lesions (n = 1), and perforated duodenal ulcer (n = 1). Fifteen (75%) of 20 patients had complete resolution of aGVHD within 4 weeks of therapy. Increasing levels of soluble TNF receptor 1 plasma concentration during the first 4 weeks of therapy indicated progression of aGVHD in 5 patients. In contrast, for 15 responding patients, soluble TNF receptor 1 plasma concentration levels returned to baseline. These data demonstrate the feasibility of using cytokine blockade in the early treatment of aGVHD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center