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Blood Adv. 2019 Jun 25;3(12):1858-1867. doi: 10.1182/bloodadvances.2019000200.

Haploidentical vs haplo-cord transplant in adults under 60 years receiving fludarabine and melphalan conditioning.

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Department of Hematology and Oncology, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, NY.
Department of Hematology and Oncology, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL; and.
Department of Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapy, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX.


Haplo-identical transplant with posttransplant cyclophosphamide (haplo) and umbilical cord blood transplant supported by third-party CD34 cells (haplo-cord) are competing approaches to alternative donor transplant. We compared, in adults younger than age 60 years, the outcomes of 170 haplo at 1 institution with that of 137 haplo-cord at 2 other institutions. All received reduced intensity conditioning with fludarabine and melphalan ± total body irradiation. GVHD prophylaxis for haplo consisted of cyclophosphamide, tacrolimus, and mycophenolate, whereas haplo-cord received antithymocyte globulin, tacrolimus, and mycophenolate. Haplo transplant used mostly bone marrow, and peripheral blood stem cells were used in haplo-cord transplants. Haplo-cord were older and had more advanced disease. Haplo-cord hastened median time to neutrophil (11 vs 18 days, P = .001) and platelet recovery (22 vs 25 days, P = .03). At 4 years, overall survival (OS) was 50% for haplo-cord vs 49% for haplo. Progression-free survival (PFS) was 40% for haplo-cord vs 45% for haplo. In multivariate analysis, the disease risk index was significant for OS (hazard ratio, 1.8; 95% confidence interval, 1.48-2.17; P = .00) and PFS. Total body irradiation was associated with decreased recurrence and improved PFS, age >40 with increased nonrelapse mortality. The type of transplant had no effect on OS, PFS, relapse, or nonrelapse mortality. Cumulative incidence of grade 2-4 acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) by day 100 was 16% after haplo-cord vs 33% after haplo (P < .0001), but grade 3-4 GVHD was similar. Chronic GVHD at 1 year was 4% after haplo-cord vs 16% after haplo (P < .0001). Haplo or haplo-cord results in similar and encouraging outcomes. Haplo-cord is associated with more rapid neutrophil and platelet recovery and lower acute and chronic GVHD. Institutional review board authorization for this retrospective study was obtained at each institution. Some patients participated in trials registered at as #NCT01810588 and NCT01050946.

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