Primary transplantation of allogeneic peripheral blood progenitor cells mobilized by filgrastim (granulocyte colony-stimulating factor)

N Schmitz, P Dreger, M Suttorp, E B Rohwedder, T Haferlach, H Löffler, A Hunter, N H Russell
Blood 1995 March 15, 85 (6): 1666-72
Transplantation of allogeneic peripheral blood progenitor cells (PBPCs) may have advantages over bone marrow transplantation (BMT) with regards to the speed of hematopoietic and immunologic recovery, which may then shorten the time spent in hospital and decrease costs. The recipient might also profit by an enhanced graft-versus-leukemia reaction exerted by the high number of natural killer cells contained in such grafts. The donor could be spared the discomfort and risks of general anesthesia and marrow harvesting. Primary transplantation of unmanipulated allogeneic PBPCs has not been reported so far because the vast amount of T cells contained in the collection product was thought to cause severe graft-versus-host disease. We present preliminary data on primary transplantation of allogeneic PBPCs in patients who either suffered from advanced leukemia or had a donor unable to undergo general anesthesia. Eight patients with a median age of 42 years suffering from acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) in first remission (n = 3), AML in third remission, AML in relapse (n = 2), acute lymphoblastic leukemia in second remission, or chronic myelogenous leukemia in accelerated phase received myeloablative therapy followed by transplantation of unmanipulated allogeneic PBPCs mobilized with granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (5 to 10 micrograms/kg of body weight of filgrastim administered for 5 to 6 days) in their HLA-identical donors. Hematopoietic reconstitution was achieved in all patients with a median of 15.5 (16.5) days after transplant needed to surpass an absolute neutrophil count of 0.5 (1.0) x 10(9)/L. The median time to an unsupported platelet count greater than 20 (> 50) x 10(9)/L was 19.5 (41) days after grafting. Three patients did not exhibit signs of acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), grade I disease was seen in one patient, and three patients experienced grade II disease limited to the skin. The only patient with severe acute GVHD (grade III) refused to take his oral cyclosporin regularly and had ineffective serum levels for most of the time until relapse. Six of eight patients are currently alive without evidence of disease between 61 and 533 days after grafting; two patients grafted for AML in relapse achieved a complete remission after transplantation but relapsed again and died of leukemia on days +48 and +70, respectively. Primary transplantation of unmanipulated allogeneic PBPCs is feasible and results in long-term engraftment without causing detrimental GVHD.

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