Publications by authors named "Edwin Alyea"

198 Publications

Efficacy and Safety of 1% Progesterone Gel to the Forehead for Ocular Chronic Graft-versus-Host Disease.

Transplant Cell Ther 2021 May 14;27(5):433.e1-433.e8. Epub 2021 Feb 14.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Massachusetts.

There is no Food and Drug Administration-approved treatments for ocular chronic graft-versus-host disease (oGVHD) to date, and current therapeutic options are limited. Forehead application of 1% progesterone gel provides corneal antinociception in preclinical models, suggesting it may be useful in alleviating ocular irritations. This study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy and safety of 1% progesterone gel in treating moderate to severe symptomatic oGVHD. Thirty-three patients with oGVHD following allogeneic stem cell transplantation were enrolled in this single-center, sponsor-initiated, prospective exploratory randomized double-masked placebo-controlled phase II clinical trial. The inclusion criteria included a National Institutes of Health consensus score of ≥2, moderate to severe ocular discomfort level, and receipt of a stable immunosuppression regimen. Twenty-one of the 22 patients in the progesterone arm and all 11 patients in the placebo arm completed the course of twice-daily forehead drug application for 10 weeks. The changes from baseline of self-reported ocular symptom scores and physician-recorded cornea fluorescein staining scores were analyzed using mixed-model repeated-measures regression model in an intention-to-treat population. The 33 patients included 12 women and 21 men, with a median age of 66 years (range, 24 to 75 years). At 10 weeks, there was a significant reduction in ocular symptoms from baseline in the progesterone group compared with the placebo group in symptom frequency (-30.7 versus -2.2; P < .001) and severity (-19.8 versus +1.6; P = .005). At 10 weeks, there was also greater reduction of cornea fluorescein staining centrally (-1.2 versus +.1; P = .001) and inferiorly (-1.4 versus -0.2; P = .005). No difference was noted in superior cornea staining. There were no severe adverse events in the progesterone group. Forehead application of 1% progesterone gel significantly improved ocular signs and symptoms within 10 weeks. It appears to be a safe and effective new therapy for oGVHD, and a novel mechanism for neuroaxis drug delivery. A multicenter phase III clinical trial is planned for further validation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtct.2021.02.008DOI Listing
May 2021

Myeloablative versus Reduced-Intensity Conditioning for Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation in Acute Myelogenous Leukemia and Myelodysplastic Syndromes-Long-Term Follow-Up of the BMT CTN 0901 Clinical Trial.

Transplant Cell Ther 2021 Feb 26. Epub 2021 Feb 26.

Duke University, Durham, North Carolina.

Several prospective randomized trials comparing conditioning intensity before allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) have been performed, with conflicting results. Although reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) leads to lower treatment-related mortality (TRM), this is offset by higher rates of relapse. Long-term follow-up of randomized comparative trials are limited. Here we present long-term follow-up of a randomized comparison of myeloablative conditioning (MAC) compared with RIC before HCT for acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) or myelodysplasia (MDS). Long-term comparative analyses of overall survival, relapse, and relapse-free survival were performed. Patients age 18 to 65 years with <5% marrow myeloblasts were randomized to receive MAC (n = 135) or RIC (n = 137), followed by HCT from an HLA-matched donor. The primary endpoint of the trial was an 18-month pointwise comparison of overall survival. The analyses were performed using a proportional hazards model. The median follow-up of the entire cohort was 51 months. At 4 years, the transplant-related mortality (TRM) was 25.1% for MAC, compared with 9.9% for RIC (P < .001). Patients who received RIC had a significantly higher risk of relapse compared to those who received MAC (hazard ratio [HR], 4.06; 95% CI, 2.59 to 6.35; P < 0.001). Among the patients who relapsed after HCT, postrelapse survival was similar at 3 years (24% for MAC and 26% for RIC). Overall survival was superior for patients who received MAC compared to those who received RIC (HR, 1.54; 95% CI, 1.07 to 2.2; P = .03). Our data show that patients who received MAC were at higher risk of late TRM compared with those who received RIC; however, because of the exceedingly high rates of relapse in the RIC arm, overall survival remained significantly better for patients who received MAC. Among patients with MDS or AML eligible for either MAC or RIC regimens, long-term follow up demonstrates a survival advantage for patients who received MAC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtct.2021.02.031DOI Listing
February 2021

Impaired T- and NK-cell reconstitution after haploidentical HCT with posttransplant cyclophosphamide.

Blood Adv 2021 01;5(2):352-364

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Administration of posttransplant cyclophosphamide (PTCy) has significantly expanded the number of patients undergoing HLA-haploidentical hematopoietic cell transplantation (haplo-HCT). To examine immune reconstitution in these patients, we monitored T- and natural killer (NK)-cell recovery in 60 patients receiving bone marrow or peripheral blood stem cell (PBSC) grafts after haplo-HCT with PTCy and 35 patients receiving HLA-matched donor PBSC grafts with standard graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) prophylaxis. Compared with HLA-matched recipients, early T-cell recovery was delayed in haplo-HCT patients and skewed toward effector memory T cells with markedly reduced naive T cells. We found higher regulatory T (Treg)-cell/conventional T (Tcon)-cell ratios early after HCT and increased PD-1 expression on memory T cells. Within the haplo-HCT, patients who did not develop chronic GVHD (cGVHD) had higher PD-1 expression on central and effector memory CD4+ Treg cells at 1 month after transplant. These findings suggest an immunologic milieu that promotes immune tolerance in haplo-HCT patients. NK cells were decreased early after haplo-HCT with preferential expansion of immature CD56brightCD16- NK cells compared with matched donor transplants. One month after transplant, mass cytometry revealed enrichment of immature NK-cell metaclusters with high NKG2A, low CD57, and low killer-cell immunoglobulin-like receptor expression after haplo-HCT, which partially recovered 3 months post-HCT. At 2 months, immature NK cells from both groups were functionally impaired, but interleukin-15 priming corrected these defects in vitro. Increased immature/mature NK-cell ratios were associated with cytomegalovirus reactivation and increased incidence of cGVHD after haplo-HCT. These homeostatic imbalances in T- and NK-cell reconstitution after haplo-HCT reveal opportunities for early immune-based interventions to optimize clinical outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2020003005DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7839379PMC
January 2021

Fit older adults with advanced myelodysplastic syndromes: who is most likely to benefit from transplant?

Leukemia 2021 04 17;35(4):1166-1175. Epub 2020 Nov 17.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA, USA.

We conducted a prospective observational study of fit adults aged 60-75 with advanced MDS, enrolled hierarchically for adverse MDS risk (intermediate-2 or high-risk international prognostic score [IPSS], low or intermediate-1 IPSS with poor-risk cytogenetics, or therapy-related MDS) or standard risk with severe cytopenia. A total of 290 patients enrolled at two centers: 175 for adverse risk and 115 for standard risk with severe cytopenia. 113 underwent HCT after a median of 5 months; median follow-up for all was 39.5 months. In univariable analyses, the hazard ratio (HR) for death comparing HCT with no HCT was 0.84 (p = 0.30). The HR for death was 0.64 (p = 0.04) for HCT ≤ 5 months after enrollment and 1.20 (p = 0.39) for HCT > 5 months. In multivariable analyses controlling for age, gender, ECOG performance status, cytogenetic risk, and IPSS risk group, HR for death was 0.75 (p = 0.13) for HCT compared to no HCT, 0.57 (p = 0.01) for adverse MDS risk and 1.33 (p = 0.36) for standard risk with severe cytopenia. In this large, prospective cohort of fit older adults with advanced MDS, we found that survival was significantly improved if HCT was performed early or for adverse risk disease but not for standard risk disease with severe cytopenia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41375-020-01092-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8035144PMC
April 2021

Genetic factors rather than blast reduction determine outcomes of allogeneic HCT in BCR-ABL-negative MPN in blast phase.

Blood Adv 2020 11;4(21):5562-5573

Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR), Department of Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI.

There is a limited understanding of the clinical and molecular factors associated with outcomes of hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) in patients with BCR-ABL-negative myeloproliferative neoplasms in blast phase (MPN-BP). Using the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research database, we evaluated HCT outcomes in 177 patients with MPN-BP. Ninety-five (54%) had sufficient DNA for targeted next-generation sequencing of 49 genes clinically relevant in hematologic malignancies. At 5 years, overall survival (OS), cumulative incidence of relapse, and nonrelapse mortality of the study cohort was 18%, 61%, and 25%, respectively. In a multivariable model, poor-risk cytogenetics was associated with inferior OS (hazard ratio [HR], 1.71; 95% CI, 1.21-2.41) due to increased relapse (HR, 1.93; 95% CI, 1.32-2.82). Transplants using mobilized peripheral blood (PB) were associated with better OS (HR, 0.60; 95% CI, 0.38-0.96). No difference in outcomes was observed in patients undergoing HCT with PB/BM blasts <5% vs those with active leukemia. Among the 95 patients with molecular data, mutation of TP53, present in 23%, was the only genetic alteration associated with outcomes. In a multivariate model, TP53-mutant patients had inferior OS (HR, 1.99; 95% CI, 1.14-3.49) and increased incidence of relapse (HR, 2.59; 95% CI, 1.41-4.74). There were no differences in the spectrum of gene mutations, number of mutations, or variant allele frequency between patients undergoing HCT with PB/BM blasts <5% vs those with active leukemia. Genetic factors, namely cytogenetic alterations and TP53 mutation status, rather than degree of cytoreduction predict outcomes of HCT in MPN-BP. No meaningful benefit of conventional HCT was observed in patients with MPN-BP and mutated TP53.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2020002727DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7656913PMC
November 2020

Comparison of outcomes of HCT in blast phase of BCR-ABL1- MPN with de novo AML and with AML following MDS.

Blood Adv 2020 10;4(19):4748-4757

Department of Hematology and Oncology, Dokkyo Medical University, Tochigi, Japan.

Comparative outcomes of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) for BCR-ABL1- myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs) in blast phase (MPN-BP) vs de novo acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and AML with prior myelodysplastic syndromes (MDSs; post-MDS AML), are unknown. Using the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) database, we compared HCT outcomes in 177 MPN-BP patients with 4749 patients with de novo AML, and 1104 patients with post-MDS AML, using multivariate regression analysis in 2 separate comparisons. In a multivariate Cox model, no difference in overall survival (OS) or relapse was observed in patients with MPN-BP vs de novo AML with active leukemia at HCT. Patients with MPN-BP in remission had inferior OS in comparison with de novo AML in remission (hazard ratio [HR], 1.40 [95% confidence interval [CI], 1.12-1.76]) due to higher relapse rate (HR, 2.18 [95% CI, 1.69-2.80]). MPN-BP patients had inferior OS (HR, 1.19 [95% CI, 1.00-1.43]) and increased relapse (HR, 1.60 [95% CI, 1.31-1.96]) compared with post-MDS AML. Poor-risk cytogenetics were associated with increased relapse in both comparisons. Peripheral blood grafts were associated with decreased relapse in MPN-BP and post-MDS AML (HR, 0.70 [95% CI, 0.57-0.86]). Nonrelapse mortality (NRM) was similar between MPN-BP vs de novo AML, and MPN-BP vs post-MDS AML. Total-body irradiation-based myeloablative conditioning was associated with higher NRM in both comparisons. Survival of MPN-BP after HCT is inferior to de novo AML in remission and post-MDS AML due to increased relapse. Relapse-prevention strategies are required to optimize HCT outcomes in MPN-BP.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2020002621DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7556156PMC
October 2020

Distinct evolutionary paths in chronic lymphocytic leukemia during resistance to the graft-versus-leukemia effect.

Sci Transl Med 2020 09;12(561)

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02215, USA.

Leukemic relapse remains a major barrier to successful allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) for aggressive hematologic malignancies. The basis for relapse of advanced lymphoid malignancies remains incompletely understood and may involve escape from the graft-versus-leukemia (GvL) effect. We hypothesized that for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) treated with allo-HSCT, leukemic cell-intrinsic features influence transplant outcomes by directing the evolutionary trajectories of CLL cells. Integrated genetic, transcriptomic, and epigenetic analyses of CLL cells from 10 patients revealed that the clinical kinetics of post-HSCT relapse are shaped by distinct molecular dynamics. Early relapses after allo-HSCT exhibited notable genetic stability; single CLL cell transcriptional analysis demonstrated a cellular heterogeneity that was static over time. In contrast, CLL cells relapsing late after allo-HSCT displayed notable genetic evolution and evidence of neoantigen depletion, consistent with marked single-cell transcriptional shifts that were unique to each patient. We observed a greater rate of epigenetic change for late relapses not seen in early relapses or relapses after chemotherapy alone, suggesting that the selection pressures of the GvL bottleneck are unlike those imposed by chemotherapy. No selective advantage for human leukocyte antigen (HLA) loss was observed, even when present in pretransplant subpopulations. Gain of stem cell modules was a common signature associated with leukemia relapse regardless of posttransplant relapse kinetics. These data elucidate the biological pathways that underlie GvL resistance and posttransplant relapse.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/scitranslmed.abb7661DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7829680PMC
September 2020

Phase II trial of natalizumab with corticosteroids as initial treatment of gastrointestinal acute graft-versus-host disease.

Bone Marrow Transplant 2020 Sep 8. Epub 2020 Sep 8.

Division of Hematologic Malignancies, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

The α4ß7 integrin is upregulated on naive and memory T cell subsets in patients who subsequently develop gastrointestinal (GI) acute GVHD. Natalizumab (Tysabri, Biogen Inc.) acts against the α4 subunit that mediates homing of lymphocytes to the GI tract. We initiated a phase II study of natalizumab with corticosteroids for initial treatment of acute GI GVHD. In total, 300 mg IV of natalizumab was given, with steroids initiated up to 3 days prior. Twenty-one subjects were treated, median age was 63 years (range 38-74), and 15 (71%) were male. Eighteen (86%) underwent RIC, 15 (71%) received MUD, and all received PBSCs. Overall GVHD at enrollment was grade II in 4 and grade III in 17. The primary endpoint, day 56 GVHD-free survival rate, was attained in 33.3%. The overall response rate at day 28 and 56 was 57% and 52%, respectively. Six of eight CRs were durable for 1 year. Five experienced toxicity possibly related to natalizumab and ten had infections before day 100. 2-year OS was 43% (95% CI 22-62%) and 2-year NRM was 52% (95% CI 29-71%). Natalizumab with corticosteroids as initial treatment of acute GI GVHD is safe, effective, and durable.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41409-020-01049-0DOI Listing
September 2020

Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation after prior targeted therapy for high-risk chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

Blood Adv 2020 09;4(17):4113-4123

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (alloHCT) can cure previously treated high-risk chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) patients if they are suitable for transplant through the graft-versus-leukemia effect. However, since the emergence of targeted therapies, the role of alloHCT for high-risk CLL is less clear. To address this question, we evaluated 108 high-risk CLL patients who underwent alloHCT from 2010 to 2018. Thirty patients from the period of 2013 to 2018 received targeted therapy prior to alloHCT. The median age for the targeted therapy cohort was 60 years (range, 30-71 years), and 20% and 73% had complete and partial remission, respectively: 76% had del(17p), 46.2% had 5 or more cytogenetic abnormalities, and 78.9% were IGHV unmutated. The median number of prior therapies was 4 (range, 1-9). With a median follow-up time of 36 months (range, 10-72 months), the 3-year overall (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) were 87% and 69%, respectively. The 3-year cumulative incidence of nonrelapse mortality and relapse was 7% and 24%, respectively. For the control cohort of 78 patients who underwent alloHCT from 2010 to 2014 and received only chemoimmunotherapy prior to transplant, the 3-year OS and PFS were 69% and 58%, respectively. Patients treated with targeted therapy prior to alloHCT had a significantly higher number of circulating T and B cells and a lower ratio of CD4 regulatory T cells to CD4 conventional T cells early after transplant. In summary, despite multiple high-risk features, the clinical outcome of CLL patients who receive targeted therapy prior to transplant is excellent and alloHCT should be offered while the disease is under control.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2020002184DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7479951PMC
September 2020

A Personalized Prediction Model for Outcomes after Allogeneic Hematopoietic Cell Transplant in Patients with Myelodysplastic Syndromes.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2020 11 8;26(11):2139-2146. Epub 2020 Aug 8.

Blood & Marrow Transplant Program, Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute, Cleveland, Ohio.

Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HCT) remains the only potentially curative option for myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). Mortality after HCT is high, with deaths related to relapse or transplant-related complications. Thus, identifying patients who may or may not benefit from HCT is clinically important. We identified 1514 patients with MDS enrolled in the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research Registry and had their peripheral blood samples sequenced for the presence of 129 commonly mutated genes in myeloid malignancies. A random survival forest algorithm was used to build the model, and the accuracy of the proposed model was assessed by concordance index. The median age of the entire cohort was 59 years. The most commonly mutated genes were ASXL1(20%), TP53 (19%), DNMT3A (15%), and TET2 (12%). The algorithm identified the following variables prior to HCT that impacted overall survival: age, TP53 mutations, absolute neutrophils count, cytogenetics per International Prognostic Scoring System-Revised, Karnofsky performance status, conditioning regimen, donor age, WBC count, hemoglobin, diagnosis of therapy-related MDS, peripheral blast percentage, mutations in RAS pathway, JAK2 mutation, number of mutations/sample, ZRSR2, and CUX1 mutations. Different variables impacted the risk of relapse post-transplant. The new model can provide survival probability at different time points that are specific (personalized) for a given patient based on the clinical and mutational variables that are listed above. The outcomes' probability at different time points may aid physicians and patients in their decision regarding HCT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2020.08.003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7609542PMC
November 2020

Timing of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (alloHCT) for chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients.

Leuk Lymphoma 2020 12 14;61(12):2811-2820. Epub 2020 Jul 14.

Blood and Marrow Transplant Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA.

While TKI are the preferred first-line treatment for chronic phase (CP) CML, alloHCT remains an important consideration. The aim is to estimate residual life expectancy (RLE) for patients initially diagnosed with CP CML based on timing of alloHCT or continuation of TKI in various settings: CP1 CML, CP2 + [after transformation to accelerated phase (AP) or blast phase (BP)], AP, or BP. Non-transplant cohort included single-institution patients initiating TKI and switched TKI due to failure. CIBMTR transplant cohort included CML patients who underwent HLA sibling matched (MRD) or unrelated donor (MUD) alloHCT. AlloHCT appeared to shorten survival in CP1 CML with overall mortality hazard ratio (HR) for alloHCT of 2.4 (95% CI 1.2-4.9;  = .02). In BP CML, there was a trend toward higher survival with alloHCT; HR = 0.7 (0.5-1.1;  = .099). AlloHCT in CP2 + [HR = 2.0 (0.8-4.9),  = .13] and AP [HR = 1.1 (0.6-2.1);  = .80] is less clear and should be determined on a case-by-case basis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10428194.2020.1783444DOI Listing
December 2020

A multicenter phase 1 study of nivolumab for relapsed hematologic malignancies after allogeneic transplantation.

Blood 2020 06;135(24):2182-2191

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Programmed cell death-1 (PD-1)/programmed death ligand-1 blockade may potentially augment graft-vs-tumor effects following allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (alloHCT), but retrospective studies of anti-PD-1 therapy reported substantial toxicity from graft-versus-host-disease (GVHD). Here, we report the results of a prospective clinical trial of PD-1 blockade for relapsed hematologic malignancies (HMs) after alloHCT (NCT01822509). The primary objective in this phase 1 multicenter, investigator-initiated study was to determine maximum tolerated dose and safety. Secondary objectives were to assess efficacy and immunologic activity. Patients with relapsed HMs following alloHCT were eligible. Nivolumab was administered every 2 weeks until progression or unacceptable toxicity, starting with a 1-mg/kg cohort, with planned deescalation based on toxicity to a 0.5-mg/kg cohort. Twenty-eight patients were treated (n = 19 myeloid, n = 9 lymphoid). Median age was 57 years (range 27-76), and median time from alloHCT to enrollment was 21 months (range 5.6-108.5). Two of 6 patients treated at 1 mg/kg experienced dose-limiting toxicity (DLT) from immune-related adverse events (irAEs). Twenty-two patients were treated at 0.5 mg/kg, and 4 DLTs occurred, including 2 irAEs and 2 with fatal GVHD. The overall response rate in efficacy-evaluable patients was 32% (8/25). With a median follow-up of 11 months, the 1-year progression-free survival and overall survival were 23% and 56%, respectively. In this first prospective clinical trial of an anti-PD-1 antibody for post-alloHCT relapse, GVHD and irAEs occurred, requiring dose deescalation, with only modest antitumor activity. Further studies of anti-PD-1 therapy post-alloHCT may require specific toxicity mitigation strategies. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT01822509.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/blood.2019004710DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7290092PMC
June 2020

Survival following allogeneic transplant in patients with myelofibrosis.

Blood Adv 2020 05;4(9):1965-1973

Department of Hematologic Oncology and Blood Disorders, Levine Cancer Institute, Atrium Health, Carolinas HealthCare System, Charlotte, NC.

Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) is the only curative therapy for myelofibrosis (MF). In this large multicenter retrospective study, overall survival (OS) in MF patients treated with allogeneic HCT (551 patients) and without HCT (non-HCT) (1377 patients) was analyzed with Cox proportional hazards model. Survival analysis stratified by the Dynamic International Prognostic Scoring System (DIPSS) revealed that the first year of treatment arm assignment, due to upfront risk of transplant-related mortality (TRM), HCT was associated with inferior OS compared with non-HCT (non-HCT vs HCT: DIPSS intermediate 1 [Int-1]: hazard ratio [HR] = 0.26, P < .0001; DIPSS-Int-2 and higher: HR, 0.39, P < .0001). Similarly, in the DIPSS low-risk MF group, due to upfront TRM risk, OS was superior with non-HCT therapies compared with HCT in the first-year post treatment arm assignment (HR, 0.16, P = .006). However, after 1 year, OS was not significantly different (HR, 1.38, P = .451). Beyond 1 year of treatment arm assignment, an OS advantage with HCT therapy in Int-1 and higher DIPSS score patients was observed (non-HCT vs HCT: DIPSS-Int-1: HR, 2.64, P < .0001; DIPSS-Int-2 and higher: HR, 2.55, P < .0001). In conclusion, long-term OS advantage with HCT was observed for patients with Int-1 or higher risk MF, but at the cost of early TRM. The magnitude of OS benefit with HCT increased as DIPSS risk score increased and became apparent with longer follow-up.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2019001084DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7218417PMC
May 2020

BK virus-specific T-cell immune reconstitution after allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation.

Blood Adv 2020 05;4(9):1881-1893

Division of Hematologic Malignancies, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Clinical disease caused by BK virus reactivation is a frequent complication of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). Because of the lack of effective antiviral agents, BK virus-specific T cells are emerging as a potential therapy for BK virus disease, but the immune response to BK virus after allogeneic HCT has not been well characterized. Our study describes reconstitution of BK virus-specific T-cell immunity in 77 adult patients after HCT. All patients had urinary symptoms, and urine was tested for BK virus replication; 33 patients were positive for BK virus (cases), and 44 were negative (controls). In BK virus cases, the median time to first positive test was 75 days (range, 2-511). BK virus cases had lower CD4 T-cell counts 3 to 9 months after transplant, but CD8 T-cell counts were similar in cases and controls. BK virus-specific T cells were identified by cytokine flow cytometry in cryopreserved samples collected prospectively. BK virus-specific CD4 T cells producing T helper 1 (Th1) cytokines recovered quickly after HCT. BK virus-specific T cells were detected more frequently in patients with BK virus reactivation at most time points, and CD4 T cells producing Th1 cytokines were more frequent than BK virus-specific cytolytic CD8 T cells. Early detection of interferon-γ+ and cytolytic BK virus-specific CD4 T cells was associated with lower rates of hematuria among cases. Overall, our study describes recovery of BK virus-specific T cells after HCT and the distinct roles for BK virus-specific T cells in the development and resolution of clinical symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2019001120DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7218418PMC
May 2020

The Role of Donor Lymphocyte Infusion (DLI) in Post-Hematopoietic Cell Transplant (HCT) Relapse for Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML) in the Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor (TKI) Era.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2020 06 14;26(6):1137-1143. Epub 2020 Feb 14.

Division of Hematology, Oncology and Blood & Marrow Transplantation, Children's Hospital Los Angeles, University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, Los Angeles, California.

Treatment for relapse of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) following hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) includes tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) with or without donor lymphocyte infusions (DLIs), but the most effective treatment strategy is unknown. This study was performed through the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) database. We retrospectively reviewed all patients reported to the CIBMTR registry from 2002 to 2014 who underwent HCT for CML and were alive 30 days postrelapse. A total of 215 HCT recipients relapsed and were analyzed in the following groups: (1) TKI alone (n = 128), (2) TKI with DLI (n = 48), and (3) DLI without TKI (n = 39). In multivariate analysis, disease status prior to HCT had a significant effect on overall survival (OS). Patients who received a DLI alone compared with a TKI with a DLI had inferior survival (hazard ratio, 2.28; 95% confidence interval, 1.23 to 4.24; P= .009). Those who received a TKI alone had similar survival compared with those who received a TKI with a DLI (P = .81). These data support that despite use of TKIs pretransplantation, TKI salvage therapy continues to provide significant survival following relapse in patients with CML following HCT. These data do not suggest that adding a DLI to a TKI adds an improvement in OS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2020.02.006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7367282PMC
June 2020

Impact of Conditioning Intensity of Allogeneic Transplantation for Acute Myeloid Leukemia With Genomic Evidence of Residual Disease.

J Clin Oncol 2020 04 20;38(12):1273-1283. Epub 2019 Dec 20.

Duke University, Durham, NC.

Purpose: Patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in remission remain at risk for relapse even after allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (alloHCT). AML measurable residual disease (MRD) status before alloHCT has been shown to be prognostic. Whether modulation of the intensity of the alloHCT conditioning regimen in patients with AML who test positive for MRD can prevent relapse and improve survival is unknown.

Methods: Ultra-deep, error-corrected sequencing for 13 commonly mutated genes in AML was performed on preconditioning blood from patients treated in a phase III clinical trial that randomly assigned adult patients with myeloid malignancy in morphologic complete remission to myeloablative conditioning (MAC) or reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC).

Results: No mutations were detected in 32% of MAC and 37% of RIC recipients; these groups had similar survival (3-year overall survival [OS], 56% 63%; = .96). In patients with a detectable mutation (next-generation sequencing [NGS] positive), relapse (3-year cumulative incidence, 19% 67%; < .001) and survival (3-year OS, 61% 43%; = .02) was significantly different between the MAC and RIC arms, respectively. In multivariable analysis for NGS-positive patients, adjusting for disease risk and donor group, RIC was significantly associated with increased relapse (hazard ratio [HR], 6.38; 95% CI, 3.37 to 12.10; < .001), decreased relapse-free survival (HR, 2.94; 95% CI, 1.84 to 4.69; < .001), and decreased OS (HR, 1.97; 95% CI, 1.17 to 3.30; = .01) compared with MAC. Models of AML MRD also showed benefit for MAC over RIC for those who tested positive.

Conclusion: This study provides evidence that MAC rather than RIC in patients with AML with genomic evidence of MRD before alloHCT can result in improved survival.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1200/JCO.19.03011DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7164487PMC
April 2020

Incidence, Predictors, and Outcomes of Veno-Occlusive Disease/Sinusoidal Obstruction Syndrome after Reduced-Intensity Allogeneic Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2020 03 31;26(3):529-539. Epub 2019 Oct 31.

Department of Medical Oncology, Division of Hematologic Malignancies, Dana-Farber Cancer, Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address:

fludarabine with intravenous busulfan at doses of 3.2 mg/kg (Flu/Bu1) or 6.4 mg/kg (Flu/Bu2). Hepatic veno-occlusive disease/sinusoidal obstruction syndrome (VOD/SOS) is a serious complication of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HCT) that is felt to be triggered, at least in part, by damage to the liver sinusoidal endothelium from cytotoxic conditioning regimens. Accordingly, the incidence of VOD/SOS after reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) HCT is low compared with myeloablative transplantation, and the natural history, risk factors, and outcomes of VOD/SOS after RIC have not been well characterized. We retrospectively reviewed 1583 consecutive patients receiving RIC HCT at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute between 2007 and 2017 and ascertained 26 cases of VOD/SOS. The median day of VOD/SOS onset was 26 days (range, 5 to 48) and the cumulative incidence at day 50 was 1.6% (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.1% to 2.4%). Day 100 nonrelapse mortality rate was 23% in the VOD/SOS cohort compared with 6.4% in patients without VOD/SOS (P = .006). Cumulative incidence of VOD/SOS at day 50 was 3.1% after RIC regimen with Flu/Bu2 ± ATG (fludarabine with two doses of busulfan, total dose 6.4 mg/kg, with or without anti-thymocyte globulin), compared with 0.15% after Flu/Bu1 ± ATG (fludarabine with single busulfan dose 3.2 mg/kg, with or without anti-thymocyte globulin) (P = .0002); the incidence rate was 2.1% after RIC HCT with sirolimus-containing graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis, compared with 0.8% for RIC without sirolimus (P = .06). Significant risk factors identified in multivariable analysis for the development of VOD/SOS were sirolimus use (hazard ratio [HR], 5.1; 95% CI, 1.8 to 14.2; P = .002) and RIC regimen with Flu/Bu2 ± ATG (HR, 34; 95% CI, 4.5 to 252; P < .001) or other (HR, 32; 95% CI, 3.9 to 257; P = .001) compared with Flu/Bu1 ± ATG. Rising serum tacrolimus or sirolimus levels, new acute kidney injury, and increasing platelet transfusion requirements were significant early predictors of onset in the week preceding prior VOD/SOS diagnosis. When compared with a previously published cohort of 76 patients with VOD/SOS who developed VOD/SOS after myeloablative HCT in the same time period, VOD/SOS after RIC occurred later and was associated with a lower peak bilirubin level and better overall survival. The variability in presenting features for RIC VOD/SOS highlights the importance of maintaining a high index of suspicion for this entity in RIC HCT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2019.10.024DOI Listing
March 2020

Maintenance Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors Following Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia: A Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research Study.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2020 03 25;26(3):472-479. Epub 2019 Oct 25.

The Blood and Marrow Transplant Group of Georgia, Northside Hospital, Atlanta, Georgia.

It remains unknown whether the administration of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) targeting BCR-ABL1 after allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) is associated with improved outcomes for patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML). In this registry study, we analyzed clinical outcomes of 390 adult patients with CML who underwent transplantation between 2007 and 2014 and received maintenance TKI following HCT (n = 89) compared with no TKI maintenance (n = 301), as reported to the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research. All patients received TKI therapy before HCT. The majority of patients had a disease status of first chronic phase at HCT (n = 240; 62%). The study was conducted as a landmark analysis, excluding patients who died, relapsed, had chronic graft-versus-host disease, or were censored before day +100 following HCT. Of the 89 patients who received TKI maintenance, 77 (87%) received a single TKI and the other 12 (13%) received multiple sequential TKIs. The most common TKIs used for maintenance were dasatinib (n = 50), imatinib (n = 27), and nilotinib (n = 27). As measured from day +100, the adjusted estimates for 5-year relapse (maintenance, 35% versus no maintenance, 26%; P = .11), leukemia-free survival (maintenance, 42% versus no maintenance, 44%; P = .65), or overall survival (maintenance, 61% versus no maintenance, 57%; P = .61) did not differ significantly between patients receiving TKI maintenance or no maintenance. These results remained unchanged in multivariate analysis and were not modified by disease status before transplantation. In conclusion, our data from this day +100 landmark analysis do not demonstrate a significant impact of maintenance TKI therapy on clinical outcomes. The optimal approach to TKI administration in the post-transplantation setting in patients with CML remains undetermined.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2019.10.017DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7358778PMC
March 2020

A phase II study of reduced intensity double umbilical cord blood transplantation using fludarabine, melphalan, and low dose total body irradiation.

Bone Marrow Transplant 2020 04 15;55(4):804-810. Epub 2019 Oct 15.

Division of Hematologic Malignancies, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA, USA.

In this multicenter Phase 2 single arm study, we substituted low dose total body irradiation (TBI) for antithymocyte globulin (ATG) in a reduced intensity conditioning regimen with the intent to lower the risk for viral infections after double umbilical cord blood (UCB) transplantation. The conditioning regimen consisted of fludarabine (30 mg/m/day, Day -7 to -2), melphalan (100 mg/m/day, Day -1), and TBI (200cGy, Day 0). Graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis was sirolimus and tacrolimus. Thirty-one patients were treated on the protocol. The median time of follow-up for survivors was 24 months (range, 3.3-55.1). Nineteen patients experienced a total of 24 clinically significant viral reactivations or infections, with 1-year cumulative incidence rate of first significant viral event as 64% (95% CI, 43-79%), compared with our historical control of 53%. Within the context of these 24 clinically significant viral reactivations, there were a total of 10 infections with organ involvement. Nonrelapse mortality was 28% (95% CI 13-45%) at 2 years. The 2-year overall and progression-free survivals were 53% (95% CI 33-69%) and 47% (95% CI 28-64%), respectively. In conclusion, the substitution of low dose TBI for ATG did not decrease the incidence of significant viral events after UCB transplantation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41409-019-0715-xDOI Listing
April 2020

Dose-escalated interleukin-2 therapy for refractory chronic graft-versus-host disease in adults and children.

Blood Adv 2019 09;3(17):2550-2561

Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Low-dose interleukin-2 (IL-2) therapy for chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD) generates a rapid rise in plasma IL-2 levels and CD4CD25CD127Foxp3 regulatory T-cell (CD4Treg) proliferation, but both decrease over time despite continued daily administration. To test whether IL-2 dose escalation at the time of anticipated falls in plasma levels could circumvent tachyphylaxis and enhance CD4Treg expansion, we conducted a phase 1 trial in 10 adult and 11 pediatric patients with steroid-refractory cGVHD (www.clinicaltrials.gov: NCT02318082). Daily IL-2 was initiated in children and adults (0.33 × 10 and 0.67 × 10 IU/m per day, respectively). Dose escalations were scheduled at weeks 2 and 4 to a maximum dose of 1 × 10 IU/m per day in children and 2 × 10 IU/m per day in adults. Patients continued at their maximum tolerated dose (MTD) until week 8. Children tolerated IL-2 dose escalation with partial responses (PRs) in 9 of 11 patients (82%) at multiple cGVHD sites, including lung. Patient-reported outcome scores for skin and lung improved significantly in pediatric patients. In contrast, 5 of 10 adults required dose reduction, and only 2 of 7 evaluable patients (29%) had PRs at week 8. CD4Tregs and natural killer cells expanded in both cohorts without significant changes in conventional CD4 T cells (Tcons) or CD8 T cells. Children achieved a higher median CD4Treg/Tcon ratio at week 8 (0.4 vs 0.18, = .02) despite lower IL-2 doses. We show for the first time that low-dose IL-2 is safe and effective in children with advanced cGVHD. In adults, escalation above the previously defined MTD did not improve CD4Treg expansion or clinical response.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2019000631DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6737411PMC
September 2019

Recurrent genetic HLA loss in AML relapsed after matched unrelated allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation.

Blood Adv 2019 07;3(14):2199-2204

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Immune evasion is a hallmark of cancer and a central mechanism underlying acquired resistance to immune therapy. In allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (alloHCT), late relapses can arise after prolonged alloreactive T-cell control, but the molecular mechanisms of immune escape remain unclear. To identify mechanisms of immune evasion, we performed a genetic analysis of serial samples from 25 patients with myeloid malignancies who relapsed ≥1 year after alloHCT. Using targeted sequencing and microarray analysis to determine HLA allele-specific copy number, we identified copy-neutral loss of heterozygosity events and focal deletions spanning class 1 HLA genes in 2 of 12 recipients of matched unrelated-donor HCT and in 1 of 4 recipients of mismatched unrelated-donor HCT. Relapsed clones, although highly related to their antecedent pretransplantation malignancies, frequently acquired additional mutations in transcription factors and mitogenic signaling genes. Previously, the study of relapse after haploidentical HCT established the paradigm of immune evasion via loss of mismatched HLA. Here, in the context of matched unrelated-donor HCT, HLA loss provides genetic evidence that allogeneic immune recognition may be mediated by minor histocompatibility antigens and suggests opportunities for novel immunologic approaches for relapse prevention.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2019000445DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6650729PMC
July 2019

Prognostic Score and Cytogenetic Risk Classification for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Patients: Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research Report.

Clin Cancer Res 2019 08 28;25(16):5143-5155. Epub 2019 Jun 28.

Seidman Cancer Center, University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio.

Purpose: To develop a prognostic model and cytogenetic risk classification for previously treated patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) undergoing reduced intensity conditioning (RIC) allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT).

Experimental Design: We performed a retrospective analysis of outcomes of 606 patients with CLL who underwent RIC allogeneic HCT between 2008 and 2014 reported to the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research.

Results: On the basis of multivariable models, disease status, comorbidity index, lymphocyte count, and white blood cell count at HCT were selected for the development of prognostic model. Using the prognostic score, we stratified patients into low-, intermediate-, high-, and very-high-risk [4-year progression-free survival (PFS) 58%, 42%, 33%, and 25%, respectively, < 0.0001; 4-year overall survival (OS) 70%, 57%, 54%, and 38%, respectively, < 0.0001]. We also evaluated karyotypic abnormalities together with del(17p) and found that del(17p) or ≥5 abnormalities showed inferior PFS. Using a multivariable model, we classified cytogenetic risk into low, intermediate, and high ( < 0.0001). When the prognostic score and cytogenetic risk were combined, patients with low prognostic score and low cytogenetic risk had prolonged PFS (61% at 4 years) and OS (75% at 4 years).

Conclusions: In this large cohort of patients with previously treated CLL who underwent RIC HCT, we developed a robust prognostic scoring system of HCT outcomes and a novel cytogenetic-based risk stratification system. These prognostic models can be used for counseling patients, comparing data across studies, and providing a benchmark for future interventions. For future study, we will further validate these models for patients receiving targeted therapies prior to HCT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-18-3988DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6697588PMC
August 2019

Functional analysis of clinical response to low-dose IL-2 in patients with refractory chronic graft-versus-host disease.

Blood Adv 2019 04;3(7):984-994

Division of Hematologic Malignancies, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston MA.

Patients with chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD) have a paucity of regulatory CD4 T cells (CD4Tregs) that mediate peripheral tolerance. In clinical trials, daily low-dose interleukin-2 (IL-2) has been administered safely for prolonged periods in patients with steroid-refractory cGVHD. Peripheral CD4Tregs expand dramatically in all patients during IL-2 therapy but clinical improvement was observed in ∼50% of patients. Here, we examined the impact of low-dose IL-2 therapy on functional T-cell markers and the T-cell repertoire within CD4Tregs, conventional CD4 T cells (CD4Tcons), and CD8 T cells. IL-2 had profound effects on CD4Tregs homeostasis in both response groups including selective expansion of the naive subset, improved thymic output, and increased expression of Ki67, FOXP3, and B-cell lymphoma 2 within CD4Tregs. Similar changes were not seen in CD4Tcons or CD8 T cells. Functionally, low-dose IL-2 enhanced, in vitro, CD4Treg-suppressive activity in both response groups, and all patient CD4Tcons were similarly suppressed by healthy donor CD4Tregs. High-throughput sequencing of the T-cell receptor β (TCRβ) locus demonstrated that low-dose IL-2 therapy increased TCR repertoire diversity and decreased evenness within CD4Tregs without affecting CD4Tcons or CD8 T cells. Using clone-tracking analysis, we observed rapid turnover of highly prevalent clones in CD4Tregs as well as the conversion of CD4Tcons to CD4Tregs. After 12 weeks of daily IL-2, clinical responders had a greater influx of novel clones within the CD4Treg compartment compared with nonresponders. Further studies to define the function and specificity of these novel CD4Treg clones may help establish the mechanisms whereby low-dose IL-2 therapy promotes immune tolerance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2018027474DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6457229PMC
April 2019

Efficacy and immunologic effects of extracorporeal photopheresis plus interleukin-2 in chronic graft-versus-host disease.

Blood Adv 2019 04;3(7):969-979

Division of Hematologic Malignancies, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA; and.

Chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD) affects >50% of hematopoietic stem cell transplant patients. Extracorporeal photopheresis (ECP), an immunomodulatory therapy, provides clinical benefit in steroid-refractory (SR) cGVHD, possibly via regulatory T (T) and natural killer (NK) cell expansion. We demonstrated that low-dose interleukin-2 (IL2) led to clinical improvement in SR-cGVHD and stimulated preferential T and NK-cell expansion with minimal effect on conventional T (T) cells. We evaluated the effect of ECP (weeks 1-16) plus IL2 (1 × 10 IU/m, weeks 9-16) in 25 adult patients with SR-cGVHD in a prospective phase 2 trial. Objective responses occurred in 29% and 62% of evaluable patients at weeks 8 (ECP alone) and 16 (ECP plus IL2), respectively. Eight weeks of ECP alone was associated with a marked decline in CD4 T ( = .03) and CD8 T cells ( = .0002), with minimal change in T cells, T:T cell ratio, or NK cells. Adding IL2 induced an increase in T cells ( < .05 at weeks 9-16 vs week 8), T:T cell ratio ( < .0001 at weeks 9-16 vs week 8), and NK cells ( < .05 at weeks 9-16 vs week 8). Patients responding to ECP alone had significantly fewer CD4 T and CD8 T cells at baseline compared with patients who responded after IL2 addition and patients who did not respond; neither T nor NK cells were associated with response to ECP alone. Altogether, ECP plus IL2 is safe and effective in patients with SR-cGVHD. ECP and IL2 have distinct immunologic effects, suggesting different therapeutic mechanisms of action. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT02340676.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2018029124DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6457231PMC
April 2019

Daratumumab for Delayed Red-Cell Engraftment after Allogeneic Transplantation.

N Engl J Med 2018 11;379(19):1846-1850

From the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute at St. Elizabeth's Medical Center (C.I.C.), Blood Bank, Department of Pathology (R.M.K.), and the Division of Hematology (J.M.C.), Brigham and Women's Hospital, and the Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (E.P.A.) - all in Boston; and the Department of Hematology and Oncology, University Medical Center, Göttingen, Germany (C.I.C.).

Daratumumab, a human IgG1κ monoclonal antibody targeting CD38, is used to treat multiple myeloma. We describe successful treatment with daratumumab in a case of treatment-refractory pure red-cell aplasia after ABO-mismatched allogeneic stem-cell transplantation. The patient was a 72-year-old man with the myelodysplastic syndrome who received a transplant from an HLA-matched, unrelated donor with a major ABO incompatibility (blood group A in the donor and blood group O in the recipient). The patient had persistent circulating anti-A antibodies and no red-cell recovery 200 days after transplantation. Standard treatments had no effect. Within 1 week after the initiation of treatment with daratumumab, he no longer required transfusions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1056/NEJMoa1807438DOI Listing
November 2018

Myeloablative vs reduced-intensity conditioning allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation for chronic myeloid leukemia.

Blood Adv 2018 11;2(21):2922-2936

Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Medicine.

Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (allo-HCT) is a potentially curative treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). Optimal conditioning intensity for allo-HCT for CML in the era of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) is unknown. Using the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research database, we sought to determine whether reduced-intensity/nonmyeloablative conditioning (RIC) allo-HCT and myeloablative conditioning (MAC) result in similar outcomes in CML patients. We evaluated 1395 CML allo-HCT recipients between the ages of 18 and 60 years. The disease status at transplant was divided into the following categories: chronic phase 1, chronic phase 2 or greater, and accelerated phase. Patients in blast phase at transplant and alternative donor transplants were excluded. The primary outcome was overall survival (OS) after allo-HCT. MAC (n = 1204) and RIC allo-HCT recipients (n = 191) from 2007 to 2014 were included. Patient, disease, and transplantation characteristics were similar, with a few exceptions. Multivariable analysis showed no significant difference in OS between MAC and RIC groups. In addition, leukemia-free survival and nonrelapse mortality did not differ significantly between the 2 groups. Compared with MAC, the RIC group had a higher risk of early relapse after allo-HCT (hazard ratio [HR], 1.85; = .001). The cumulative incidence of chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD) was lower with RIC than with MAC (HR, 0.77; = .02). RIC provides similar survival and lower cGVHD compared with MAC and therefore may be a reasonable alternative to MAC for CML patients in the TKI era.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2018024844DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6234373PMC
November 2018

Early Clinical Predictors of Hepatic Veno-Occlusive Disease/Sinusoidal Obstruction Syndrome after Myeloablative Stem Cell Transplantation.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2019 01 3;25(1):137-144. Epub 2018 Aug 3.

Division of Hematologic Malignancies, Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address:

Hepatic veno-occlusive disease (VOD), or sinusoidal obstruction syndrome (SOS), is a serious complication of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) with mortality in its severe form exceeding 80%. Although the incidence of VOD/SOS has fallen with contemporary transplantation practices, the increasing use of inotuzumab, the return of gemtuzumab, and the popularity of pharmacokinetic-guided high-dose busulfan may impact incidence. Early intervention with defibrotide improves survival, but prompt diagnosis can be difficult. We aimed to identify clinical parameters that could aid in early detection of VOD/SOS in a large, retrospective, cohort study. Of the 1823 adult patients who underwent myeloablative HSCT between 1996 and 2015 in our center, 205 (11%) developed VOD/SOS, with a median onset of day +14. We compared parameters in the 7 days preceding VOD/SOS onset for cases to 447 randomly selected control subjects in an analogous time frame to determine those with predictive value. Between 7 days before and the day of diagnosis, VOD/SOS patients had higher serum creatinine levels and were more likely to develop acute kidney injury (61% versus 33%, P < .0001), more commonly experienced refractoriness to platelet transfusion (48% versus 24%, P < .0001), and had higher trough serum tacrolimus levels (7 days before VOD/SOS onset: median 8.8 versus 7.3, P = .0002; day of onset: median 9.3 versus 7.2, P < .0001) compared with control subjects. Acute renal dysfunction, platelet refractoriness, and elevated or abnormal tacrolimus levels are dynamic clinical markers that should alert clinicians to the development of VOD/SOS before the presence of classical diagnostic criteria. Using these clinical features to recognize VOD/SOS earlier in its clinical course could promote earlier treatment and lead to improved outcomes of this potentially serious complication.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2018.07.039DOI Listing
January 2019

Effect of Antihuman T Lymphocyte Globulin on Immune Recovery after Myeloablative Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation with Matched Unrelated Donors: Analysis of Immune Reconstitution in a Double-Blind Randomized Controlled Trial.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2018 11 10;24(11):2216-2223. Epub 2018 Jul 10.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Department of Biostatistics and Computation Biology, Boston, Massachusetts USA.

We recently conducted a randomized double-blind study in which we demonstrated that moderate/severe chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD) but not cGVHD-free survival was reduced in patients receiving anti-T lymphocyte globulin (ATLG) versus placebo. In a companion study we performed immunophenotypic analysis to determine the impact of ATLG on immune reconstitution (IR) and to correlate IR with clinical outcomes. The randomized study (n = 254) included patients (aged 18 to 65 years) who underwent myeloablative transplants for acute myeloid leukemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, or acute lymphoblastic leukemia from HLA-matched unrelated donors. Ninety-one patients consented for the companion IR study (ATLG = 44, placebo = 47). Blood samples were collected on days 30, 100, 180, and 360 after hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT), and multiparameter flow cytometry was performed in a blinded fashion. Reconstitution of CD3 and CD4 T cells was delayed up to 6 months post-HCT in the ATLG arm, whereas absolute regulatory T cell (Treg) (CD425127-) numbers were lower only in the first 100 days. Analysis of the CD4 Treg and conventional T cells (Tconv) (CD425127) compartments showed a profound absence of naive Tregs and Tconv in the first 100 days post-HCT, with very slow recovery for 1 year. B cell and natural killer cell recovery were similar in each arm. Higher absolute counts of CD3, CD4, CD8 T, Tregs, and Tconv were associated with improved overall survival, progression-free survival, and nonrelapse mortality but not moderate/severe cGVHD. Although ATLG delays CD3 and CD4 T cell recovery post-transplant, it has a relative Treg sparing effect after the early post-HCT period, with possible implications for protection from cGVHD. ATLG severely compromises the generation of naive CD4 cells (Treg and Tconv), potentially affecting the diversity of the TCR repertoire and T cell responses against malignancy and infection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2018.07.002DOI Listing
November 2018