Advances in pediatric hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.
Allogeneic and autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) has become a therapeutic option for an increasing number of patients with otherwise incurable leukemias, solid tumors, immunodeficiencies, hemoglobinopathies and metabolic diseases. For patients requiring an allogeneic transplant, the addition of unrelated cord blood units and partially matched family member donors as alternate stem cell sources has increased the chances that an appropriate donor can be identified. In addition, new approaches to stem cell graft engineering are yielding insights into potential cellular immune therapies, which may decrease the adverse effects of HSCT such as graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) and harness the alloimmune graft-versus-leukemia effect. Novel conditioning regimens, primarily reduced intensity and non-myeloablative regimens, allow patients with significant co-morbidities to undergo transplantation with reduced morbidity and mortality. Combinations of immune-modulatory cytokines and monoclonal antibodies with autologous and allogeneic transplantation are among the advances being explored in contemporary HSCT.
Barfield, RC; Kasow, KA; Hale, GA
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