Risk factors for a severe form of COVID-19 after allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation: a Société Francophone de Greffe de Moelle et de Thérapie cellulaire (SFGM-TC) multicentre cohort study
British Journal of Haematology. 2021
Testosterone deficiency in men surviving childhood acute leukemia after treatment with hematopoietic stem cell transplantation or testicular radiation: an L.E.A. study
Bone marrow transplantation. 2021
We included 255 patients from the L.E.A. French long-term follow-up cohort. All had received hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and/or testicular radiation for childhood acute leukemia and were older than 18 years at last L.E.A. evaluation. Total testosterone deficiency was defined as a <12 nmol/l level or by substitutive therapy, partial deficiency as normal testosterone with elevated luteinizing hormone (>10 UI/l). After myeloablative total body irradiation (n = 178), 55.6% had total deficiency, 15.7% partial deficiency, and 28.7% were normal. A 4-6 Gy testicular boost and a younger age at HSCT increased significantly the risk. After a Busulfan-containing myeloablative conditioning regimen (n = 53), 28.3% had total deficiency, 15.1% partial deficiency, 56.6% were normal (62.5% vs. 0% in patients without or with additional testicular radiation). A 24-Gy testicular radiation without HSCT induced total or partial deficiency in 71.4% and 28.6%, respectively (n = 21). Total testosterone deficiency increased the risk of metabolic syndrome: 25% vs. 12.1% in men with partial testosterone deficiency and 8.8% when Leydig cell function was normal (p = 0.031).
Assessment of chimerism and immunomodulation to prevent post-transplantation relapse in childhood acute myeloblastic leukemia: is it the right approach?
Pediatric hematology and oncology. 2020;:1-10
Relapse of acute myeloblastic leukemia (AML) after first allogenic hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) is a fatal complication. Sixty-five children transplanted for AML were included in a prospective national study from June 2005 to July 2008 to explore the feasibility of preemptive immune modulation based on the monitoring of blood chimerism. Relapse occurred in 23 patients (35%). The median time between the last complete chimerism and relapse was 13.5 days (2-138). Prompt discontinuation of cyclosporin and the administration of donor lymphocyte infusions (DLIs) based on chimerism monitoring failed as a preemptive tool, either for detecting relapse or certifying long-term remission.
Myeloablative conditioning for allo-HSCT in pediatric ALL: FTBI or chemotherapy?-A multicenter EBMT-PDWP study
Bone marrow transplantation. 2020
Although most children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) receive fractionated total body irradiation (FTBI) as myeloablative conditioning (MAC) for allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT), it is an important matter of debate if chemotherapy can effectively replace FTBI. To compare outcomes after FTBI versus chemotherapy-based conditioning (CC), we performed a retrospective EBMT registry study. Children aged 2-18 years after MAC for first allo-HSCT of bone marrow (BM) or peripheral blood stem cells (PBSC) from matched-related (MRD) or unrelated donors (UD) in first (CR1) or second remission (CR2) between 2000 and 2012 were included. Propensity score weighting was used to control pretreatment imbalances of the observed variables. 3.054 patients were analyzed. CR1 (1.498): median follow-up (FU) after FTBI (1.285) and CC (213) was 6.8 and 6.1 years. Survivals were not significantly different. CR2 (1.556): median FU after FTBI (1.345) and CC (211) was 6.2 years. Outcomes after FTBI were superior as compared with CC with regard to overall survival (OS), leukemia-free survival (LFS), relapse incidence (RI), and nonrelapse mortality (NRM). However, we must emphasize the preliminary character of the results of this retrospective "real-world-practice" study. These findings will be prospectively assessed in the ALL SCTped 2012 FORUM trial.
Supportive care during pediatric hematopoietic stem cell transplantation: beyond infectious diseases. A report from workshops on supportive care of the Pediatric Diseases Working Party (PDWP) of the European Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT)
Bone marrow transplantation. 2020
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is currently the standard of care for many malignant and nonmalignant blood diseases. As several treatment-emerging acute toxicities are expected, optimal supportive measurements critically affect HSCT outcomes. The paucity of good clinical studies in supportive practices gives rise to the establishment of heterogeneous guidelines across the different centers, which hampers direct clinical comparison in multicentric studies. Aiming to harmonize the supportive care provided during the pediatric HSCT in Europe, the Pediatric Diseases Working Party (PDWP) of the European Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT) promoted dedicated workshops during the years 2017 and 2018. The present paper describes the resulting consensus on the management of sinusoidal obstructive syndrome, mucositis, enteral and parenteral nutrition, iron overload, and emesis during HSCT.
Pediatric acute graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis and treatment: Real-life approach reveals dissimilarities compared to published recommendations
Transplant international : official journal of the European Society for Organ Transplantation. 2020
Pediatric allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) practices differ from those of adults, particularly the heterogeneity of transplantable non-malignant diseases and the lower incidence of Graft-versus-Host-Disease (GVHD). Several guidelines regarding the management of acute (a) GVHD in adult HCT have been published. We aimed to capture the real-life approaches for pediatric aGVHD prophylaxis/treatment, and data from 75/193 (response rate 39%) EBMT centers (26 countries) were included, representing half (48%) of the pediatric EBMT-HCT activity. Results with ≥75% approval from respondents (74/75) for GVHD prophylaxis after myeloablative HCT for malignancies partially contradict published guidelines: single-agent cyclosporine A (CsA) was used for matched-sibling donor HCT in 47%; blood CsA levels were reported lower; the relapse risk in malignant diseases influenced GVHD prophylaxis with early withdrawal of CsA; distinct longer duration of CsA was employed in non-malignant diseases. Most centers used additional anti-thymocyte globulin for matched-unrelated and mismatched donor HCT, but not for matched-siblings. Regarding prophylaxis in non-myeloablative conditioning (mainly for non-malignant diseases) responses showed broad heterogeneity. High conformity was found for first-line treatment; however, results regarding steroid-refractory aGVHD indicate an earlier diagnosis in children. Our findings highlight the need for standardized pediatric approaches towards aGVHD prophylaxis/treatment differentiated for malignant and non-malignant underlying diseases.
Total Body Irradiation or Chemotherapy Conditioning in Childhood ALL: A Multinational, Randomized, Noninferiority Phase III Study
Journal of clinical oncology : official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. 2020;:Jco2002529
PURPOSE Total body irradiation (TBI) before allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in pediatric patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is efficacious, but long-term side effects are concerning. We investigated whether preparative combination chemotherapy could replace TBI in such patients. PATIENTS AND METHODS FORUM is a randomized, controlled, open-label, international, multicenter, phase III, noninferiority study. Patients = 18 years at diagnosis, 4-21 years at HSCT, in complete remission pre-HSCT, and with an HLA-compatible related or unrelated donor were randomly assigned to myeloablative conditioning with fractionated 12 Gy TBI and etoposide versus fludarabine, thiotepa, and either busulfan or treosulfan. The noninferiority margin was 8%. With 1,000 patients randomly assigned in 5 years, 2-year minimum follow-up, and one-sided alpha of 5%, 80% power was calculated. A futility stopping rule would halt random assignment if chemoconditioning was significantly inferior to TBI (EudraCT: 2012-003032-22; ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT01949129). RESULTS Between April 2013 and December 2018, 543 patients were screened, 417 were randomly assigned, 212 received TBI, and 201 received chemoconditioning. The stopping rule was applied on March 31, 2019. The median follow-up was 2.1 years. In the intention-to-treat population, 2-year overall survival (OS) was significantly higher following TBI (0.91; 95% CI, 0.86 to 0.95; P < .0001) versus chemoconditioning (0.75; 95% CI, 0.67 to 0.81). Two-year cumulative incidence of relapse and treatment-related mortality were 0.12 (95% CI, 0.08 to 0.17; P < .0001) and 0.02 (95% CI, < 0.01 to 0.05; P = .0269) following TBI and 0.33 (95% CI, 0.25 to 0.40) and 0.09 (95% CI, 0.05 to 0.14) following chemoconditioning, respectively. CONCLUSION Improved OS and lower relapse risk were observed following TBI plus etoposide compared with chemoconditioning. We therefore recommend TBI plus etoposide for patients > 4 years old with high-risk ALL undergoing allogeneic HSCT.
What is known?
Allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) provides a potential curative treatment option for paediatric patients with high risk acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL). Pre-transplant conditioning regimes with total body irradiation (TBI) have resulted in encouraging overall and relapse-free survival but may cause serious long-term side effects. As a result, several studies have investigated TBI-free regimes. A large meta-analysis (1) which included seven randomised controlled trials comparing TBI-based with chemoconditioning regimes demonstrated significantly lower treatment related mortality (TRM) but no overall survival (OS) advantage with TBI-based regimes. A further small randomised study (2) found significantly higher event-free survival (EFS) with TBI-based regimes in patients with unrelated donors, but a non-significant difference only in patients with matched sibling donors. Concerns about late effects of TBI on growth, cognitive function and secondary malignancy however remain. A single centre retrospective study (3) in paediatric ALL concluded that triosulphan based regimes were safe and efficacious while a similar review (4) in adult patients suggested that busulphan and clofarabine could provide an alternative to TBI. This paper reports on the FORUM study. It compares TBI with chemoconditioning regimes to investigate whether optimal chemoconditioning regimens could replace TBI in paediatric patients with high-risk ALL.
What did this paper set out to examine?
This is the largest randomised, controlled, open-label, international, multicentre, phase III trial comparing TBI plus etoposide with chemoconditioning (fludarabine, thiotepa and busulfan or triosulfan) in paediatric ALL to date. It investigates whether chemoconditioning is non-inferior to TBI-based regimes with the primary endpoint of OS. It is also the first study to directly and prospectively compare these regimes in terms of disease-free survival and short- and long-term adverse events. The study aimed to recruit 1000 patients.
What did they show?
Improved OS and lower relapse risk were observed following TBI plus etoposide compared with chemoconditioning. Patients ≤18 years old at diagnosis and aged 4-21 at HSCT with high risk ALL in complete morphological remission with HLA compatible related or unrelated donor were included in the study. Patients were randomised 1:1 to 12Gy TBI with etoposide versus fludarabine, thiotepa and busulfan or triosulphan conditioning. Patients were well matched for baseline characteristics and demographics. Randomisation was stopped early due significant inferiority of chemoconditioning compared with TBI-based regime.
Following randomisation of 417 patients, a futility stopping rule was applied because patients receiving chemoconditioning with fludarabine, thiotepa, and busulfan or treosulfan had inferior OS to those receiving TBI plus etoposide. Two-year OS was 0.91 (95% CI, P <.0001) following TBI versus 0.75 (95% CI) following chemoconditioning. Median follow up was 2.1 years. Relapse was the commonest reason for treatment failure and out of 67 patients who relapsed, there was no difference in OS between conditioning regimes. There was no difference in serious adverse events or GvHD rates between the groups.
What are the implications for practice and for future work?
While TBI is associated with potentially serious long-term side effects, this study supports growing evidence demonstrating improved outcomes for patients undergoing TBI-based conditioning. Here patients receiving TBI-based conditioning had a significantly lower risk of relapse and TRM than those given chemoconditioning.
Of note, TRM in this trial was low compared to previously reported studies. FOCUS reported a 2-year OS and EFS rate of 0.91 and 0.91 respectively, which is the lowest documented TRM in HSCT for high-risk paediatric ALL to date. Additionally, other risk factors thought to impact on outcomes (e.g. leukaemia phenotype, MRD pre-transplant, donor type, etc) were not found to be significant in FOCUS. Only remission status (CR1 vs CR2) and conditioning regime influenced OS and EFS. This may be in part explained by the strong attempts within this study to reduce MRD prior to HSCT in all patients.
This was a noninferiority study which required a sample size of 1000 patients with 2-year minimum follow-up to make analysis of primary outcomes feasible. As the majority of relapses in paediatric ALL occur in the first 24 months, it is unlikely that longer follow up would result in dramatic changes to outcomes.
Non-randomised recruitment in FORUM to assess long-term side effects of TBI, such as secondary malignancy, in FORUM is ongoing. However, no difference in adverse events or incidence of GvHD was found between study groups. The study reports a composite end point of 2-year GVHD-free, relapse-free survival of 72% (95% CI) following TBI plus etoposide and 51% (95% CI, p= .0003) following chemoconditioning which might be a benchmark for future investigations.
Patients diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia at or before 18 years of age, who underwent HSCT aged 4-21 years (n=413)
TBI conditioning (n=212)
Chemoconditioning: fludarabine, thiotepa, and either busulfan or treosulfan (n=201)
The median follow-up was 2.1 years. In the intention-to-treat population, 2-year overall survival (OS) was significantly higher following TBI (0.91) versus chemoconditioning (0.75). Two-year cumulative incidence of relapse and treatment-related mortality were 0.12 and 0.02 following TBI and 0.33 and 0.09 following chemoconditioning, respectively.
Risk Factors for Severe Form of COVID-19 after Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: A SFGM-TC Multicentre Cohort Study
The impact of donor type on the outcome of pediatric patients with very high risk acute lymphoblastic leukemia. A study of the ALL SCT 2003 BFM-SG and 2007-BFM-International SG
Bone marrow transplantation. 2020
Allogeneic HSCT represents the only potentially curative treatment for very high risk (VHR) ALL. Two consecutive international prospective studies, ALL-SCT-(I)BFM 2003 and 2007 were conducted in 1150 pediatric patients. 569 presented with VHR disease leading to any kind of HSCT. All patients >2 year old were transplanted after TBI-based MAC. The median follow-up was 5 years. 463 patients were transplanted from matched donor (MD) and 106 from mismatched donor (MMD). 214 were in CR1. Stem cell source was unmanipulated BM for 330 patients, unmanipulated PBSC for 135, ex vivo T-cell depleted PBSC for 62 and cord-blood for 26. There were more advanced disease, more ex vivo T-cell depletion, and more chemotherapy based conditioning regimen for patients transplanted from MMD as compared to those transplanted from MSD or MD. Median follow up (reversed Kaplan Meier estimator) was 4.99 years, median follow up of survivals was 4.88, range (0.01-11.72) years. The 4-year CI of extensive cGvHD was 13?±?2% and 17?±?4% (p?=?NS) for the patients transplanted from MD and MMD, respectively. 4-year EFS was statistically better for patients transplanted from MD (60?±?2% vs. 42?±?5%, p?0.001) for the whole cohort. This difference does not exist if considering separately patients treated in the most recent study. There was no difference in 4-year CI of relapse. The 4-year NRM was lower for patients transplanted from MD (9?±?1% vs. 23?±?4%, p?0.001). In multivariate analysis, donor-type appears as a negative risk-factor for OS, EFS, and NRM. This paper demonstrates the impact of donor type on overall results of allogeneic stem cell transplantation for very-high risk pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia with worse results when using MMD stem cell source.
Children with very high risk acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (n=569)
Matched donor (MD) or matched sibling donor (MSD) transplantation (n=463)
Mismatched donor transplantation (MMD, n=106)
There were more advanced disease, more ex vivo T-cell depletion, and more chemotherapy based conditioning regimen for patients transplanted from MMD as compared to those transplanted from MSD or MD. Median follow up (reversed Kaplan Meier estimator) was 4.99 years,median follow up of survivals was 4.88 years. The 4-year CI of extensive cGvHD was 13± 2% and 17 ± 4% (p=NS) for the patients transplanted from MD and MMD, respectively. 4-year EFS was statistically better for patients transplanted from MD (60±2% vs. 42±5%) for the whole cohort. This difference does not exist if considering separately patients treated in the most recent study. There was no difference in 4-year CI of relapse. The 4-year NRM was lower for patients transplanted from MD (9±1% vs. 23±4%). In multivariate analysis, donor-type appears as a negative risk-factor for OS, EFS, and NRM.
Favorable outcomes of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in children and adolescents with Diamond-Blackfan anemia
Blood advances. 2020;4(8):1760-1769
Diamond-Blackfan anemia (DBA) is a congenital pure red cell aplasia associated with congenital abnormalities and cancer predisposition. Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) can correct the hematological phenotype and is indicated in transfusion-dependent patients. In 70 children reported to the German DBA and French HSCT registries, HSCT was performed from 1985 to 2017. Median age at HSCT was 5.5 years (range, 0.9-17.3 years). Two-thirds of patients (64%) were transplanted from a matched sibling donor (MSD), and most procedures were performed after the year 1999 (73%). Primary engraftment was achieved in all patients. One patient developed secondary graft failure. Cumulative incidence of acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) was 24% for degrees II-IV (95% confidence interval [CI], 16% to 37%) and 7% for degrees III-IV (95% CI, 3% to 17%); cumulative incidence of chronic GVHD was 11% (95% CI, 5% to 22%). The probability of chronic GVHD-free survival (cGFS) was 87% (95% CI, 79% to 95%) and significantly improved over time (<2000: 68% [95% CI, 47% to 89%] vs ≥2000: 94% [95% CI, 87% to 100%], P < .01). cGFS was comparable following HSCT from a MSD and an unrelated donor (UD). Of note, no severe chronic GVHD or deaths were reported following MSD-HSCT after 1999. The difference of cGFS in children transplanted <10 years of age compared with older patients did not reach statistical significance (<10 years: 90% [95% CI, 81% to 99%] vs 10-18 years 78% [95% CI, 58% to 98%]). In summary, these data indicate that HSCT is efficient and safe in young DBA patients and should be considered if a MSD or matched UD is available. HSCT for transfusion dependency only must be critically discussed in older patients.