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Bone Marrow Transplant. 2009 Nov;44(9):585-8. doi: 10.1038/bmt.2009.64. Epub 2009 Apr 13.

Non-intensive treatment with low-dose 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine (DAC) prior to allogeneic blood SCT of older MDS/AML patients.

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Division of Hematology and Oncology, University of Freiburg Medical Center, Freiburg, Germany.


Novel, non-intensive treatment options in older MDS/AML patients planned for allografting, with the goal of down-staging the underlying disease and bridging time to transplantation, are presently being developed. 5-azacytidine and decitabine (DAC) are of particular interest, as they can be given repetitively, with very limited non-hematologic toxicity and result in responses both in MDS and AML even at low doses. We describe 15 consecutive patients (median age 69 years, range 60-75 years) with MDS (n=10) or AML (n=5) who all received first-line treatment with DAC and subsequent allografting (from sibling donor in four patients, unrelated donor in 11) after reduced-intensity conditioning with the FBM regimen. Successful engraftment was attained in 14/15 patients, all of whom achieved a CR, with a median duration of 5 months (range 1+ to 51+). Six of these 14 patients are alive (4 with complete donor chimerism), 8 have died either from relapse (n=4) or treatment-related complications while in CR (n=4). We conclude that allografting after low-dose DAC and subsequent conditioning with FBM is feasible, with no unexpected toxicities and appears as a valid alternative to standard chemotherapy ('InDACtion instead of induction') in elderly patients with MDS/AML.

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