Haploidentical Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: Expanding the Horizon for Hematologic Disorders.
Despite the advent of targeted therapies and novel agents, allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation remains the only curative modality in the management of hematologic disorders. The necessity to find an HLA-matched related donor is a major obstacle that compromises the widespread application and development of this field. Matched unrelated donors and umbilical cord blood have emerged as alternative sources of donor stem cells; however, the cost of maintaining donor registries and cord blood banks is very high and even impractical in developing countries. Almost every patient has an HLA haploidentical relative in the family, meaning that haploidentical donors are potential sources of stem cells, especially in situations where cord blood or matched unrelated donors are not easily available. Due to the high rates of graft failure and graft-versus-host disease, haploidentical transplant was not considered a feasible option up until the late 20th century, when strategies such as "megadose stem cell infusions" and posttransplantation immunosuppression with cyclophosphamide showed the ability to overcome the HLA disparity barrier and significantly improve the rates of engraftment and reduce the incidence and severity of graft-versus-host disease. Newer technologies of graft manipulation have also yielded the same effects in addition to preserving the antileukemic cells in the donor graft.
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