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Bone Marrow Transplant. 2008 Dec;42(11):757-60. doi: 10.1038/bmt.2008.252. Epub 2008 Sep 1.

Efficacy of imatinib mesylate in the treatment of refractory sclerodermatous chronic GVHD.

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Service des Maladies du Sang, Lille, France.


Treatment of sclerodermatous chronic GVHD (cGVHD) remains disappointing. Imatinib mesylate enables selective, dual inhibition of the transforming growth factor beta (TGFbeta) and PDGF pathways. Recently, the drug's effects on fibroblasts have been reported in both in vitro and in vivo studies. The inhibition of fibroblast growth and decreased collagen production in dermal fibroblasts is thus a logical therapeutic approach. Two patients who developed refractory sclerodermatous cGVHD following allo-SCT received imatinib mesylate at the dose of 400 mg/day. In both patients, the scleroderma symptoms disappeared within 3 months of initiation of the treatment. At the time of this report, the two patients were both alive and had a very good skin response. This report shows that imatinib is effective in patients with refractory sclerodermatous cGVHD. Considering its well-documented clinical profile in other diseases, imatinib is a promising candidate for the treatment of sclerodermatous cGVHD.

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