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Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation for neuroblastoma: the CIBMTR experience


Although the role of autologous hematopoietic cell transplantation (auto-HCT) is well established in neuroblastoma (NBL), the role of allogeneic HCT (allo-HCT) is controversial. The Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research conducted a retrospective review of 143 allo-HCT for NBL reported in 1990–2007. Patients were categorized into two different groups: those who had not (Group 1) and had (Group 2) undergone a prior auto-HCT (n=46 and 97, respectively). One-year and five-year OS were 59% and 29% for Group 1 and 50% and 7% for Group 2, respectively. Among donor types, disease-free survival (DFS) and OS were significantly lower for unrelated transplants at 1 and 3 years but not at 5 years post HCT. Patients in CR or very good partial response (VGPR) at transplant had lower relapse rates and better DFS and OS, compared with those not in CR or VGPR. Our analysis indicates that allo-HCT can cure some neuroblastoma patients, with lower relapse rates and improved survival in patients without a history of prior auto-HCT as compared with those patients who had previously undergone auto-HCT. Although the data do not address why either strategy was chosen for patients, allo-HCT after a prior auto-HCT appears to offer minimal benefit. Disease recurrence remains the most common cause of treatment failure.

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The CIBMTR is supported by Public Health Service Grant/Cooperative Agreement U24-CA76518 from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID); a Grant/Cooperative Agreement 5U01HL069294 from NHLBI and NCI; a contract HHSH234200637015C with Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA/DHHS); two Grants N00014-06-1-0704 and N00014-08-1-0058 from the Office of Naval Research; and grants from Allos, Inc.; Amgen, Inc.; Angioblast; Anonymous donation to the Medical College of Wisconsin; Ariad; Be the Match Foundation; Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association; Buchanan Family Foundation; CaridianBCT; Celgene Corporation; CellGenix, GmbH; Children’s Leukemia Research Association; Fresenius-Biotech North America, Inc.; Gamida Cell Teva Joint Venture Ltd.; Genentech, Inc.; Genzyme Corporation; GlaxoSmithKline; HistoGenetics, Inc.; Kiadis Pharma; The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society; The Medical College of Wisconsin; Merck & Co, Inc.; Millennium: The Takeda Oncology Co.; Milliman USA, Inc.; Miltenyi Biotec, Inc.; National Marrow Donor Program; Optum Healthcare Solutions, Inc.; Osiris Therapeutics, Inc.; Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc.; RemedyMD; Sanofi; Seattle Genetics; Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals; Soligenix, Inc.; StemCyte, A Global Cord Blood Therapeutics Co.; Stemsoft Software, Inc.; Swedish Orphan Biovitrum; Tarix Pharmaceuticals; Teva Neuroscience, Inc.; THERAKOS, Inc.; and Wellpoint, Inc. The views expressed in this article do not reflect the official policy or position of the National Institute of Health, the Department of the Navy, the Department of Defense, or any other agency of the US Government.

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Correspondence to M Arora.

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Hale, G., Arora, M., Ahn, K. et al. Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation for neuroblastoma: the CIBMTR experience. Bone Marrow Transplant 48, 1056–1064 (2013).

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  • neuroblastoma
  • allogeneic HCT
  • autologous HCT

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