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Bone Marrow Transplant. 2008 Feb;41(4):399-405. Epub 2007 Nov 5.

Risk factors for acute graft-versus-host disease grades II-IV after reduced intensity conditioning allogeneic stem cell transplantation with unrelated donors: a single centre study.

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Department of Clinical Immunology and Centre for Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation, Karolinska Institutet, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.


We analysed factors associated with moderate to severe acute GVHD in 111 patients treated with fludarabin-based reduced intensity conditioning (RIC) and allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Most patients had a haematological malignancy. Donors were 97 HLA-A, -B and -DRbeta1 identical unrelated and 14 HLA-A, -B or -DRbeta1 allele mismatched unrelated donors. In the univariate analysis, we found ten factors associated with acute GVHD. These were diagnosis (P=0.06), GVHD prophylaxis with combinations other than CsA+MTX (P=0.006), graft nucleated (P<0.001) and CD34 (P<0.001) cell-dose, bidirectional ABO mismatch (P=0.001), conditioning (P=0.002), hospital vs home-care (P=0.06), ATG dose (P<0.001), donor herpes virus serology (P=0.07) and an immunized female donor to male recipient (P=0.05). In the multivariate analysis, three factors remained significant: a high CD34 cell dose (P<0.001), low dose (4 mg/kg) ATG (P<0.001), and an immunized female donor to male recipient (P<0.01). Patients receiving a CD34 cell dose > or =17.0 x 10(6) per kg had a higher incidence of GVHD, 53.7%, compared to 22.3% in patients receiving a lower dose (P=0.002). In patients without any of these risk factors (n=70), the incidence of acute GVHD was 14.1%, while it was 38.0 and 85.0% in patients with one (n=29) or two (n=10) risk factors (P<0.001). We concluded that risk factors for acute GVHD using RIC are similar as using myeloablative conditioning.

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