Publications by authors named "Francesca Lorentino"

18 Publications

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Donor Lymphocyte Infusions After Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation in Acute Leukemia: A Survey From the Gruppo Italiano Trapianto Midollo Osseo (GITMO).

Front Oncol 2020 15;10:572918. Epub 2020 Oct 15.

Ematologia, Azienda Ospedaliera-Universitaria di Bologna, Bologna, Italy.

We conducted a retrospective multicenter study including pediatric and adult patients with acute leukemia (AL) who received donor lymphocyte infusions (DLIs) after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HCT) between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2015, in order to determine the efficacy and toxicity of the immune treatment. Two hundred fifty-two patients, median age 45.1 years (1.6-73.4), were enrolled from 34 Italian transplant centers. The underlying disease was acute myeloid leukemia in 180 cases (71%). Donors were HLA identical or 1 locus mismatched sibling (40%), unrelated (40%), or haploidentical (20%). The first DLI was administered at a median time of 258 days (55-3,784) after HCT. The main indication for DLI was leukemia relapse (73%), followed by mixed chimerism (17%), and pre-emptive/prophylactic use (10%). Ninety-six patients (38%) received one single infusion, whereas 65 (26%), 42 (17%), and 49 patients (19%) received 2, 3, or ≥4 infusions, respectively, with a median of 31 days between two subsequent DLIs. Forty percent of evaluable patients received no treatment before the first DLI, whereas radiotherapy, conventional chemotherapy or targeted treatments were administered in 3, 39, and 18%, respectively. In informative patients, a few severe adverse events were reported: grade III-IV graft versus host disease (GVHD) (3%), grade III-IV hematological toxicity (11%), and DLI-related mortality (9%). Forty-six patients (18%) received a second HCT after a median of 232 days (32-1,390) from the first DLI. With a median follow-up of 461 days (2-3,255) after the first DLI, 1-, 3-, and 5- year overall survival (OS) of the whole group from start of DLI treatment was 55, 39, and 33%, respectively. In multivariate analysis, older recipient age, and transplants from haploidentical donors significantly reduced OS, whereas DLI for mixed chimerism or as pre-emptive/prophylactic treatment compared to DLI for AL relapse and a schedule including more than one DLI significantly prolonged OS. This GITMO survey confirms that DLI administration in absence of overt hematological relapse and multiple infusions are associated with a favorable outcome in AL patients. DLI from haploidentical donors had a poor outcome and may represent an area of further investigation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2020.572918DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7593406PMC
October 2020

Post-transplantation cyclophosphamide GvHD prophylaxis after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation from 9/10 or 10/10 HLA-matched unrelated donors for acute leukemia.

Leukemia 2021 02 14;35(2):585-594. Epub 2020 May 14.

Hôpital Saint-Antoine, Paris University UPMC, INSERM U938, Paris, France.

HLA-matching largely contributes to unrelated donor hematopoietic cell transplantation (UD-HCT) success but, due to the selective deletion of alloreactive T-cells, post-transplantation cyclophosphamide (PTCy) could modulate its negative impact on outcomes. We retrospectively compared acute leukemia patients receiving 10/10 or 9/10 HLA allele-matched UD-HCT with PTCy-GvHD prophylaxis between 2010 and 2017, reported to EBMT registry. The 100-day incidence of grade ≥2 and grade ≥3 aGvHD were comparable for 10/10 and 9/10 UD (28% versus 28%, p = 0.8 and 10% versus 8%, p = 0.5, respectively). The 2-year cGvHD and extensive cGvHD were similar between 10/10 and 9/10 UD (35% versus 44%, p = 0.2 and 21% versus 20%, p = 0.6, respectively). The 2-year nonrelapse mortality was 20% after 10/10 and 16% after 9/10 UD-HCT (p = 0.1). Relapse incidence at 2-year was 24% for 10/10 and 28% for 9/10 UD-HCT (p = 0.4). Leukemia-free survival at 2-year was the same for 10/10 and 9/10 UD (56 and 56%, p = 0.6, respectively), with comparable overall survival (62 and 59%, p = 0.9, respectively). Multivariate analysis showed no effect of HLA-matching on outcomes. An advanced disease status and patient disability remained the most important factors portending a worse survival. PTCy could alleviate the detrimental effect of HLA-allele mismatching in UD-HCT, potentially expanding the donor pool for acute leukemia patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41375-020-0863-4DOI Listing
February 2021

Mechanisms of Leukemia Immune Evasion and Their Role in Relapse After Haploidentical Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation.

Front Immunol 2020 25;11:147. Epub 2020 Feb 25.

Unit of Immunogenetics, Leukemia Genomics and Immunobiology, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milan, Italy.

Over the last decade, the development of multiple strategies to allow the safe transfer from the donor to the patient of high numbers of partially HLA-incompatible T cells has dramatically reduced the toxicities of haploidentical hematopoietic cell transplantation (haplo-HCT), but this was not accompanied by a similar positive impact on the incidence of post-transplantation relapse. In the present review, we will elaborate on how the unique interplay between HLA-mismatched immune system and malignancy that characterizes haplo-HCT may impact relapse biology, shaping the selection of disease variants that are resistant to the "graft-vs.-leukemia" effect. In particular, we will present current knowledge on genomic loss of HLA, a relapse modality first described in haplo-HCT and accounting for a significant proportion of relapses in this setting, and discuss other more recently identified mechanisms of post-transplantation immune evasion and relapse, including the transcriptional downregulation of HLA class II molecules and the enforcement of inhibitory checkpoints between T cells and leukemia. Ultimately, we will review the available treatment options for patients who relapse after haplo-HCT and discuss on how a deeper insight into relapse immunobiology might inform the rational and personalized selection of therapies to improve the largely unsatisfactory clinical outcome of relapsing patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2020.00147DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7052328PMC
February 2020

Infections after Allogenic Transplant with Post-Transplant Cyclophosphamide: Impact of Donor HLA Matching.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2020 06 28;26(6):1179-1188. Epub 2020 Jan 28.

Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milan, Italy; University Vita-Salute San Raffaele, Milan, Italy. Electronic address:

Incidence and outcome of infections after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) with post-transplant cyclophosphamide (PT-Cy) as graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) prophylaxis are largely unknown. Study aims were to estimate the incidence of pre-engraftment bloodstream infections (PE-BSIs) and viral infections (VIs; cytomegalovirus [CMV], adenovirus [ADV], human herpes virus 6 [HHV6], and BK-polyomavirus hemorrhagic-cystitis [BKPyV-HC]), their predictive factors, and infection-related mortality (IRM) after HSCT with PT-Cy. We analyzed 235 patients: 62%, 21%, and 17% received haploidentical (haplo), matched-unrelated donor (MUD), and matched-related donor, respectively. Overall, 72 patients had 77 PE-BSI episodes at a median time of 13 days after HSCT: cumulative incidence function (CIF) at 28 days was 32%, without differences among donor types (P = .988). By multivariate analysis, CIF of PE-BSI was higher in patients with severe neutropenia before HSCT (adjusted hazard ratio [AHR] = 2.90) and in multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria rectal carriers (AHR = 2.68). IRM at 30 days was 5%, without differences by donor type (P = .106). Overall, 208 patients experienced ≥1 VIs (first occurrence among CMV, HHV6, ADV, BKPyV-HC) at a median time of 20 days after HSCT: CIF at 90 days was 91%, significantly higher in MUD and haplo (P = .0089). By multivariate analysis, also acute GVHD grade ≥2 (AHR = 1.32) and host/donor CMV-serology mismatch (positive/positive versus negative/negative: AHR = 2.95, positive/negative versus negative/negative: AHR = 2.41, negative/positive versus negative/negative: AHR = 2.35) affected VIs occurrence. IRM at 180 days was 8%, without differences among donor types (P = .106). In conclusion, study results did not show a significant impact of donor type on PE-BSI incidence; conversely, MUD and haploidentical transplants retained a higher occurrence of VIs in the early phase after HSCT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2020.01.013DOI Listing
June 2020

Interleukin-6 as Biomarker for Acute GvHD and Survival After Allogeneic Transplant With Post-transplant Cyclophosphamide.

Front Immunol 2019 1;10:2319. Epub 2019 Oct 1.

Haematology and Bone Marrow Transplant Unit, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milan, Italy.

Although the outcome of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) has dramatically improved in the past decade, it is still compromised by transplant-related mortality (TRM), mainly caused by Graft-vs. -Host Disease (GvHD). We conducted a prospective observational study to ascertain the potential of serum interleukin-6 (IL6) levels, measured before conditioning and 7 days after allo-HSCT, in predicting acute GvHD, TRM and survival after allo-HSCT with Post-Transplant Cyclophosphamide (PT-Cy) based GvHD prophylaxis. Between April 2014 and June 2017, we collected samples from 166 consecutive allo-HSCT patients. By ROC analysis, we identified a threshold of 2.5 pg/ml for pre-transplant IL6 and 16.5 pg/ml for post-transplant IL6. Both univariate and multivariate analyses confirmed the ability of high baseline IL6 levels to predict worse OS (HR 4.3; < 0.01) and grade II-IV acute GvHD (HR 1.8; = 0.04), and of high post-transplant IL6 to identify patients with worse OS (HR 3.3; < 0.01) and higher risk of grade II-IV (HR 5; < 0.01) and grade III-IV acute GvHD (HR 10.2; < 0.01). In multivariate analysis, both baseline (HR 6.7; < 0.01) and post-transplant high IL6 levels (HR 3.5; = 0.02) predicted higher TRM. IL6 may contribute to the risk stratification of patients at major risk for aGvHD and TRM, potentially providing a window for additional prophylactic or preemptive strategies to improve the quality of life in the early post-transplant phase and the outcome of allo-HSCT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2019.02319DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6779849PMC
October 2020

CMV Management with Specific Immunoglobulins: A Multicentric Retrospective Analysis on 92 Allotransplanted Patients.

Mediterr J Hematol Infect Dis 2019 1;11(1):e2019048. Epub 2019 Sep 1.

IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milano, Italy, Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation Unit.

CMV represents one of the most severe life-threatening complications of allogeneic stem cell transplantation (allo-SCT). Pre-emptive treatment is highly effective, but toxicity and repetitive reactivation of CMV represent a significant challenge in the clinical practice. The use of anti-CMV specific immunoglobulins (Megalotect) is controversial. We retrospectively collected data on 92 patients submitted to allo-SCT for hematological malignancies, in whom Megalotect was used either for prophylaxis (n=14) or with pre-emptive therapy, together with an anti-CMV specific drug (n=78). All the patients were considered at high-risk, due to the presence of at least one risk factor for CMV reactivation. The treatment was well tolerated, with no reported infusion reactions, nor other adverse events, none of the 14 cases treated with Megalotect as prophylaxis developed CMV reactivation. 51/78 (65%) patients who received Megalotect during pre-emptive treatment achieved complete clearance of CMV viremia, and 14/51 patients (29%) developed a breakthrough CMV infection. 7/78 patients (9%) developed CMV disease. The projected 1-year OS, 1-year TRM, and 1-year RR is 74%, 15%, and 19%, respectively. No differences were observed in terms of OS, TRM, and RR by comparing patients who achieved a complete response after treatment versus those who did not. These retrospective data suggest that Megalotect is safe and well-tolerated. When used as prophylaxis, no CMV reactivation was recorded. Further prospective trials are warranted to identify the best set of patients who can benefit from Megalotect alone or in addition to anti-CMV specific drugs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4084/MJHID.2019.048DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6736170PMC
September 2019

Comparable outcomes of haploidentical, 10/10 and 9/10 unrelated donor transplantation in adverse karyotype AML in first complete remission.

Am J Hematol 2018 10 3;93(10):1236-1244. Epub 2018 Sep 3.

Université Pierre and Marie Curie, Paris, France.

Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is the most powerful therapy preventing relapse in patients with adverse cytogenetics acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in first complete remission (CR1). In the absence of a matched related donor, potential alternatives include 10/10, 9/10 HLA-matched unrelated (UD) or haploidentical (Haplo) donors. We analyzed clinical outcomes of patients undergoing T-cell repleted Haplo (n = 74), 10/10 UD (n = 433) and 9/10 UD HSCT (n = 123) from 2007 to 2015, reported to the EBMT Registry. Adverse risk AML was defined according to the 2017 ELN cytogenetic risk classification. The 2-year nonrelapse mortality was 19% for Haplo, 18% for 10/10 UD and 18% for 9/10 UD (P = .9). The relapse incidence was not significantly affected by donor source, with a 2-year incidence of 27% for Haplo HSCT, 39% for 10/10 UD and 37% for 9/10 UD SCT (P = .3). We show comparable probabilities of leukemia-free survival (LFS) and overall survival (OS) at 2 years among Haplo HSCT, 10/10 UD SCT and 9/10 UD SCT (53% and 59%, 43% and 50%, 44% and 50%, respectively, P = .5 for both parameters). The type of donor was not significantly associated with either acute or chronic graft-vs.-host disease incidence. Using multivariable Cox model, Haplo HSCT recipients experienced comparable OS and LFS to 10/10 and 9/10 UD. In the present series of adverse cytogenetics AML patients in CR1, Haplo HSCT recipients had comparable outcomes to those of 10/10 and 9/10 UDs, suggesting that all these types of HSCT may be considered a valid option in this high risk population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ajh.25231DOI Listing
October 2018

Killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor ligand mismatching and outcome after haploidentical transplantation with post-transplant cyclophosphamide.

Leukemia 2019 01 15;33(1):230-239. Epub 2018 Jun 15.

Division of Hematology, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer and Sackler Medical School, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel.

Haploidentical stem cell transplantation with T cell-replete grafts and post-transplant cyclophosphamide (PTCy) is increasingly used with encouraging outcome. Natural killer (NK) cell alloreactivity, predicted by missing killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor (KIR) ligands in the recipient that are present in their donor improves outcome of T cell-depleted haploidentical transplants. We explored the role of KIR ligand mismatching in 444 acute leukemia patients after T cell-replete transplants with PTCy. Thirty-seven percent of all patients had KIR ligand mismatching. Patients were in first remission (CR1) (39%), second remission (CR2) (26%), or active disease (35%). Stem cell source was peripheral blood (PBSC, 46%) or bone marrow (54%). The 2-year relapse, non-relapse mortality (NRM), and survival rates were 36.0% (95% confidence interval (CI), 31.4-40.7), 23.9% (20.0-28.0), and 45.9% (40.8-51.0), respectively. Multivariate analysis identified acute myeloid leukemia compared with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (hazard ratio (HR) 0.55, P = 0.002), female gender (HR 0.72, P = 0.04), and good performance status (HR 0.71, P = 0.04) as factors associated with better survival, while advanced age (HR 1.13, P = 0.04), active disease (HR 3.38, P < 0.0001), and KIR ligand mismatching (HR 1.41, P = 0.03) as associated with worse survival. KIR ligand mismatching was associated with a trend for higher relapse but not with graft-versus-host disease or NRM. The KIR ligand-mismatching effect was more prominent in patients given PBSC. In conclusion, there is no evidence that KIR ligand mismatching results in better outcome in the PTCy setting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41375-018-0170-5DOI Listing
January 2019

Clinical Impact of Pretransplant Multidrug-Resistant Gram-Negative Colonization in Autologous and Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2018 07 2;24(7):1476-1482. Epub 2018 Mar 2.

Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation Unit, IRCCS San Raffaele Hospital, Milan, Italy. Electronic address:

Multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria (MDR-GNB) are an emerging cause of morbidity and mortality after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Three-hundred forty-eight consecutive patients transplanted at our hospital from July 2012 to January 2016 were screened for a pretransplant MDR-GNB colonization and evaluated for clinical outcomes. A pretransplant MDR-GNB colonization was found in 16.9% of allo-HSCT and in 9.6% of auto-HSCT recipients. Both in auto- and in allo-HSCT, carriers of a MDR-GNB showed no significant differences in overall survival (OS), transplant-related mortality (TRM), or infection-related mortality (IRM) compared with noncarriers. OS at 2 years for carriers compared with noncarriers was 85% versus 81% (P = .262) in auto-HSCT and 50% versus 43% (P = .091) in allo-HSCT. TRM at 2 years was 14% versus 5% (P = .405) in auto-HSCT and 31% versus 25% (P = .301) in allo-HSCT. IRM at 2 years was 14% versus 2% (P = .142) in auto-HSCT and 23% versus 14% (P = .304) in allo-HSCT. In multivariate analysis, only grade III to IV acute graft-versus-host disease was an independent factor for reduced OS (P < .001) and increased TRM (P < .001) and IRM (P < .001). During the first year after transplant, we collected 73 GNB bloodstream infectious (BSI) episodes in 54 patients, 42.4% of which sustained by a MDR-GNB. Rectal swabs positivity associated with the pathogen causing subsequent MDR-GNB BSI episodes in 13 of 31 (41.9%). Overall, OS at 4 months from MDR-GNB BSI episode onset was of 67.9%, with a 14-day attributed mortality of 12.9%, not being significantly different between carriers and noncarriers (P = .207). We conclude that in this extended single-center experience, a pretransplant MDR-GNB colonization did not significantly influence OS, TRM, and IRM both in auto- and allo-HSCT settings and that MDR-GNB attributed mortality can be controlled in carriers when an early pre-emptive antimicrobial therapy is started in case of neutropenic fever.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2018.02.021DOI Listing
July 2018

Adjuvant role of SeptiFast to improve the diagnosis of sepsis in a large cohort of hematological patients.

Bone Marrow Transplant 2018 04 12;53(4):410-416. Epub 2018 Jan 12.

Hematology and BMT Unit, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute, via Olgettina 60, 20132, Milano, Italy.

Febrile neutropenia and sepsis are common and life-threatening complications in hematological diseases. This study was performed retrospectively in 514 patients treated for febrile neutropenia at our institute, to investigate the clinical usefulness of a molecular tool, LightCycler® SeptiFast test (SF), to promptly recognize pathogens causing sepsis in hematological patients. We collected 1837 blood samples of 514 consecutive hematological patients. The time of processing is short. Overall, 757 microorganisms in 663 episodes were detected by molecular test and standard blood cultures (BC): 73.6% Gram-positive bacteria, 23.9% Gram-negative bacteria, and 2.5% fungal species. This large analysis demonstrated a significant episode-to episode agreement (71.9%) between the two methods, higher in negative samples (89.14%), and a specificity of 75.89%. Clinical variables that gave a statistically significant contribution to their concordance were absolute neutrophil count, ongoing antimicrobial therapy, timing of test execution, and organ localization of infection. The large analysis highlights the potential of molecular-based assays directly performed on blood samples, especially if implementing the detection of antibiotic resistance genes, which was lacking in the used study.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41409-017-0039-7DOI Listing
April 2018

The impact of HLA matching on outcomes of unmanipulated haploidentical HSCT is modulated by GVHD prophylaxis.

Blood Adv 2017 Apr 21;1(11):669-680. Epub 2017 Apr 21.

Hématologie Clinique et Thérapie Cellulaire, Hôpital Saint-Antoine, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Paris, France.

Haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (haplo-HSCT) with unmanipulated grafts is increasingly adopted for high-risk acute leukemia, with acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD) prophylaxis based on antithymocyte globulin (ATG) or posttransplant cyclophosphamide (PTCy) as main platforms. No consensus exists on selection criteria over several haploidentical donors. We evaluated the impact of donor-recipient antigenic and allelic HLA-A, -B, -C, and -DRB1 mismatches on mismatched haplotype on outcomes of 509 unmanipulated haplo-HSCTs performed for acute leukemia under a PTCy (N = 313) or ATG (N = 196) regimen. An antigenic but not allelic mismatch at the HLA-DRB1 locus was an independent risk factor for grade ≥2 aGVHD in PTCy (hazard ratio [HR], 2.0; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.2-4.0; = .02) but not in ATG regimens (HR, 1.3; 95% CI, 0.4-3.4; = .6). Moreover, the hazards of aGVHD were significantly associated with other factors influencing alloreactivity, including peripheral blood as stem cell source (HR, 2.2; 95% CI, 1.4-3; < .01), reduced-intensity conditioning (HR, 0.6; 95% CI, 0.4-0.9; = .04), and female donors (HR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1-3.2; = .05), in PTCy but not ATG regimens. No significant associations were found between cumulative number of HLA mismatches and GVHD, or between HLA-matching status and other study end points including transplant-related mortality, disease-free survival, and relapse. Based on these data, the role of HLA mismatching on unshared haplotype appears not to be sufficiently prominent to justify its consideration in haploidentical donor selection. However, the role of HLA matching in haploidentical HSCT might be modulated by GVHD prophylaxis, calling for further investigations in this increasingly relevant field.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2017006429DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5727822PMC
April 2017

NK cell recovery after haploidentical HSCT with posttransplant cyclophosphamide: dynamics and clinical implications.

Blood 2018 01 6;131(2):247-262. Epub 2017 Oct 6.

Unit of Immunogenetics, Leukemia Genomics and Immunobiology.

The use of posttransplant cyclophosphamide (PT-Cy) as graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) prophylaxis has revolutionized haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), allowing safe infusion of unmanipulated T cell-replete grafts. PT-Cy selectively eliminates proliferating alloreactive T cells, but whether and how it affects natural killer (NK) cells and their alloreactivity is largely unknown. Here we characterized NK cell dynamics in 17 patients who received unmanipulated haploidentical grafts, containing high numbers of mature NK cells, according to PT-Cy-based protocols in 2 independent centers. In both series, we documented robust proliferation of donor-derived NK cells immediately after HSCT. After infusion of Cy, a marked reduction of proliferating NK cells was evident, suggesting selective purging of dividing cells. Supporting this hypothesis, proliferating NK cells did not express aldehyde dehydrogenase and were killed by Cy in vitro. After ablation of mature NK cells, starting from day 15 after HSCT and favored by the high levels of interleukin-15 present in patients' sera, immature NK cells (CD62LNKG2AKIR) became highly prevalent, possibly directly stemming from infused hematopoietic stem cells. Importantly, also putatively alloreactive single KIR NK cells were eliminated by PT-Cy and were thus decreased in numbers and antileukemic potential at day 30 after HSCT. As a consequence, in an extended series of 99 haplo-HSCT with PT-Cy, we found no significant difference in progression-free survival between patients with or without predicted NK alloreactivity (42% vs 52% at 1 year, = NS). Our data suggest that the majority of mature NK cells infused with unmanipulated grafts are lost upon PT-Cy administration, blunting NK cell alloreactivity in this transplantation setting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/blood-2017-05-780668DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5757695PMC
January 2018

Human Herpesvirus 6 Infection Following Haploidentical Transplantation: Immune Recovery and Outcome.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2016 12 30;22(12):2250-2255. Epub 2016 Sep 30.

Unit of Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milan, Italy; Vita-Salute San Raffaele University, Milan, Italy. Electronic address:

Human herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) is increasingly recognized as a potentially life-threatening pathogen in allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (alloSCT). We retrospectively evaluated 54 adult patients who developed positivity to HHV-6 after alloSCT. The median time from alloSCT to HHV-6 reactivation was 34 days. HHV-6 was present in plasma samples from 31 patients, in bone marrow (BM) of 9 patients, in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and liver or gut biopsy specimens from 33 patients, and in cerebrospinal fluid of 7 patients. Twenty-nine patients developed acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), mainly grade III-IV, and 15 had concomitant cytomegalovirus reactivation. The median absolute CD3 lymphocyte count was 207 cells/µL. We reported the following clinical manifestations: fever in 43 patients, skin rash in 22, hepatitis in 19, diarrhea in 24, encephalitis in 10, BM suppression in 18, and delayed engraftment in 11. Antiviral pharmacologic treatment was administered to 37 patients; nonetheless, the mortality rate was relatively high in this population (overall survival [OS] at 1 year, 38% ± 7%). A better OS was significantly associated with a CD3 cell count ≥200/µL at the time of HHV-6 reactivation (P = .0002). OS was also positively affected by the absence of acute GVHD grade III-IV (P = .03) and by complete disease remission (P = .03), but was not significantly influenced by steroid administration, time after alloSCT, type of antiviral prophylaxis, plasma viral load, or organ involvement. Although HHV-6 detection typically occurred early after alloSCT, better T cell immune reconstitution seems to have the potential to improve clinical outcomes. Our findings provide new insight into the interplay between HHV-6 and the transplanted immune system.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2016.09.018DOI Listing
December 2016

Post-transplant cyclophosphamide versus anti-thymocyte globulin as graft- versus-host disease prophylaxis in haploidentical transplant.

Haematologica 2017 02 6;102(2):401-410. Epub 2016 Oct 6.

Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris, France.

Severe graft-versus-host disease is a major barrier for non-T-cell-depleted haploidentical stem cell transplantation. There is no consensus on the optimal graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis. This study compared the two most commonly used graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis regimens (post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based vs. the anti-thymocyte globulin-based) in adults with acute myeloid leukemia reported to the European Society for Blood and Bone Marrow Transplantation. A total of 308 patients were analyzed; 193 received post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based regimen and 115 anti-thymocyte globulin-based regimen as anti-graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis. The post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based regimen was more likely to be associated to bone marrow as graft source (60% vs. 40%; P=0.01). Patients in the post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based regimen group had significantly less grade 3-4 acute graft-versus-host disease than those in the anti-thymocyte globulin-based group (5% vs. 12%, respectively; P=0.01), comparable to chronic graft-versus-host disease. Multivariate analysis showed that non-relapse mortality was lower in the post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based regimen group [22% vs. 30%, Hazard ratio (HR) 1.77(95%CI: 1.09-2.86); P=0.02] with no difference in relapse incidence. Patients receiving post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based regimen had better graft-versus-host disease-free, relapse-free survival [HR 1.45 (95%CI: 1.04-2.02); P=0.03] and leukemia-free survival [HR 1.48 (95%CI: 1.03-2.12); P=0.03] than those in the anti-thymocyte globulin-based group. In the multivariate analysis, there was also a trend for a higher overall survival [HR 1.43 (95%CI: 0.98-2.09); P=0.06] for post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based regimen versus the anti-thymocyte globulin-based group. Notably, center experience was also associated with non-relapse mortality and graft-versus-host disease-free, relapse-free survival. Haplo-SCT using a post-transplant cyclophosphamide-based regimen can achieve better leukemia-free survival and graft-versus-host disease-free, relapse-free survival, lower incidence of graft-versus-host disease and non-relapse mortality as compared to anti-thymocyte globulin-based graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis in patients with acute myeloid leukemia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3324/haematol.2016.151779DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5286948PMC
February 2017

Post-transplantation Cyclophosphamide and Sirolimus after Haploidentical Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Using a Treosulfan-based Myeloablative Conditioning and Peripheral Blood Stem Cells.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2015 Aug 19;21(8):1506-14. Epub 2015 May 19.

Division of Regenerative Medicine, Stem Cells and Gene Therapy, Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation Unit, San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milan, Italy.

Haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) performed using bone marrow (BM) grafts and post-transplantation cyclophosphamide (PTCy) has gained much interest for the excellent toxicity profile after both reduced-intensity and myeloablative conditioning. We investigated, in a cohort of 40 high-risk hematological patients, the feasibility of peripheral blood stem cells grafts after a treosulfan-melphalan myeloablative conditioning, followed by a PTCy and sirolimus-based graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) prophylaxis (Sir-PTCy). Donor engraftment occurred in all patients, with full donor chimerism achieved by day 30. Post-HSCT recovery of lymphocyte subsets was broad and fast, with a median time to CD4 > 200/μL of 41 days. Cumulative incidences of grade II to IV and III-IV acute GVHD were 15% and 7.5%, respectively, and were associated with a significant early increase in circulating regulatory T cells at day 15 after HSCT, with values < 5% being predictive of subsequent GVHD occurrence. The 1-year cumulative incidence of chronic GVHD was 20%. Nonrelapse mortality (NRM) at 100 days and 1 year were 12% and 17%, respectively. With a median follow-up for living patients of 15 months, the estimated 1-year overall and disease-free survival (DFS) was 56% and 48%, respectively. Outcomes were more favorable in patients who underwent transplantation in complete remission (1-year DFS 71%) versus patients who underwent transplantation with active disease (DFS, 34%; P = .01). Overall, myeloablative haploidentical HSCT with peripheral blood stem cells (PBSC) and Sir-PTCy is a feasible treatment option: the low rates of GVHD and NRM as well as the favorable immune reconstitution profile pave the way for a prospective comparative trial comparing BM and PBSC in this specific transplantation setting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2015.04.025DOI Listing
August 2015