Long-term outcomes and risk factor analysis of steroid-refractory graft versus host disease after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation
Bone marrow transplantation. 2020
Steroid-refractory graft versus host disease (GVHD) represents a fearsome complication after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). We conducted a retrospective study on outcomes and risk factors associated with acute and chronic steroid-refractory GVHD in a large cohort of 1207 patients receiving HSCT in Saint Louis Hospital between 2007 and 2017. Among patients who developed an acute and/or a chronic GVHD, the cumulative incidences of acute and chronic steroid-refractory disease were 31% and 48%, respectively, at day +100 and 1-year post-HSCT. Through a multivariable analysis we selected several risk factors associated with the development of a steroid-refractory disease. For acute GVHD steroid refractoriness, we identified (1) a very high disease risk index, (2) an unrelated donor, (3) the absence of in vivo T-depletion as GVHD prophylaxis, and (4) a reduced intensity conditioning regimen. For chronic GVHD, (1) the use of peripheral blood stem cells, (2) unrelated donors, and (3) absence of in vivo T-depletion were more likely associated with a steroid-refractory disease. After the construction of a multistate dynamic model, we found that the probability of being alive without relapse after the resolution of all GVHD episodes was about 36% in the long term.
Bone marrow versus mobilized peripheral blood stem cell graft in T-cell-replete haploidentical transplantation in acute lymphoblastic leukemia
The ideal stem cell graft source remains unknown in haploidentical haematopietic cell transplantation (haplo-HCT) with posttransplantation cyclophosphamide (PTCy). This study compared outcomes of bone marrow (BM) versus peripheral blood (PB) stem cell graft for haplo-HCT in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). A total of 314 patients with ALL (BM-157; PB-157) were included in this study. The cumulative incidence of engraftment at day 30 was higher in the PB group compared with BM (93% vs. 88%, p < 0.01). The incidences of acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) and chronic GVHD were not significantly different between the study cohorts. In the multivariate analysis, there were tendencies toward a higher incidence of grade II-IV acute GVHD (hazard ratio (HR) = 1.52, p = 0.07), chronic GVHD (HR = 1.58, p = 0.05), and nonrelapse mortality (NRM) (HR = 1.66, p = 0.06) in patients receiving PB versus BM graft, respectively. The use of PB grafts was associated with lower leukemia-free survival (LFS) (HR = 1.43, p = 0.05), overall survival (OS) (HR = 1.59, p = 0.02), and GVHD-free, relapse-free survival (GRFS) (HR = 1.42, p = 0.03) compared with BM grafts. There was no difference in relapse incidence (HR = 1.23, p = 0.41) between the study groups. In conclusion, use of BM graft results in better survival after haplo-HCT with PTCy in patients with ALL, compared with PB stem cell graft.
The outcome of two or more HLA loci mismatched unrelated donor hematopoietic cell transplantation for acute leukemia: an ALWP of the EBMT study
Bone marrow transplantation. 2020
A mismatched unrelated (MMUD) donor represents an alternative therapeutic option for patients who need allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (allo-HCT) and do not have a human leukocyte antigen (HLA) matched donor. We studied outcomes of patients with acute leukemia transplanted from ≥2 HLA allele MMUD. The study population consisted of 465 patients. The median follow-up period was 63 and 75 months in the AML and ALL groups, respectively. The incidence of grade II-IV and grade III-IV acute (a) graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) during the first 100 days was 37% and 16%, respectively. Total and extensive chronic (c) GVHD rates at 2 years were 38% and 17%, respectively. In the entire population, the 5-year relapse incidence (RI), non-relapse mortality (NRM), leukemia-free survival (LFS), overall survival and refined GVHD-free, relapse-free survival (GRFS) was 33%, 31%, 37%, 41%, and 27%, respectively. In the multivariate analysis, HLA-DR mismatch was a poor prognostic factor, giving a significantly higher NRM [hazard ratio (HR), 1.67, p = 0.02]; poorer LFS (HR, 1.42, p = 0.03); OS (HR, 1.46, p = 0.03) and higher aGVHD grade II-IV (HR, 1.46, p = 0.05). In this study, allo-HCT from ≤6/8 HLA allele MMUD in acute leukemia patients resulted in acceptable LFS and refined GRFS. HLA-DR mismatch was a poor prognostic factor.
Patients with acute leukaemia (n=465, of which AML n=320, ALL n=145)
Transplantation with >/=2 HLA allele mismatched unrelated donor
The incidence of grade II-IV and grade III-IV acute (a) graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) during the first 100 days was 37% in AML patients and 16% in ALL patients. Total and extensive chronic (c) GVHD rates at 2 years were 38% and 17%, respectively. In the entire population, the 5-year relapse incidence (RI), non-relapse mortality (NRM), leukemia-free survival (LFS), overall survival and refined GVHD-free, relapse-free survival (GRFS) was 33%, 31%, 37%, 41%, and 27%, respectively. In the multivariate analysis, HLA-DR mismatch was a poor prognostic factor, giving a significantly higher NRM [hazard ratio (HR), 1.67]; poorer LFS (HR, 1.42); OS (HR, 1.46) and higher aGVHD grade II-IV (HR, 1.46).
Expansion of circulating CD49b+LAG3+ type 1 regulatory T (Tr1) cells in human chronic graft-versus-host disease
The Journal of investigative dermatology. 2020
A Personalized Approach to Guide Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation in Younger Adults with Acute Myeloid Leukemia
A multistage model instructed by a large dataset (knowledge bank [KB] algorithm) has recently been developed to improve outcome prediction and tailor therapeutic decision, including hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in AML. We assessed the performance of the KB in guiding HSCT decision in first complete remission (CR1) in 656 AML patients younger than 60 years from the ALFA-0702 trial (NCT00932412). KB predictions of Overall Survival (OS) were superior to those of European LeukemiaNet (ELN) 2017 risk stratification (C-index 68.9 versus 63.0). Among patients reaching CR1, HSCT in CR1, as a time-dependent covariate was detrimental in those with favorable ELN 2017 risk and those with negative NPM1 MRD (interaction tests P=0.01 and P=0.02, respectively). Using KB simulations of survival at 5 years in a scenario without HSCT in CR1 (KB score), we identified in a similar time-dependent analysis a significant interaction between the KB score and HSCT, with HSCT in CR1 being detrimental only in patients with a good prognosis based on KB simulations (KB score =40, interaction test P=0.01). We could finally integrate ELN 2017, NPM1 MRD and KB scores to sort 545 CR1 patients into 278 (51.0%) HSCT candidates and 267 (49.0%) chemo-only candidates. In both time-dependent and 6-month landmark analyses, HSCT significantly improved OS in HSCT candidates while it significantly shortened OS in chemo-only candidates. Integrating KB predictions with ELN 2017 and MRD may thus represent a promising approach to optimize HSCT timing in younger AML patients.
Functional and phylogenetic alterations in gut microbiome are linked to graft-versus-host disease severity
Blood advances. 2020;4(9):1824-1832
Acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD) is the main complication of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Changes in gut microbiota composition have been associated with subsequent aGVHD, and reconstitution of healthy microbiota is currently being explored as a therapeutic approach. However, the specific actors in the intestinal ecosystem involved in the pathologic process at the time of aGVHD onset are not yet fully known. We prospectively collected stool samples from patients who underwent allogeneic HSCT. Patients sampled at aGVHD onset were compared with non-GVHD patients. To identify phylogenetic and functional signatures of the disease process, we determined fecal short-chain fatty acid (SFCA) profiles and used high-throughput DNA sequencing and real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction to assess the microbiota composition. Microbiota alterations were highly specific of gastrointestinal (GI) aGVHD severity. Bacterial biomass and alpha-diversity were lower in severe aGVHD. We identified several bacterial signatures associated with severe aGVHD at disease onset; a negative correlation was observed with anaerobic bacteria of the Lachnospiraceae, especially the Blautia genus, and Ruminococcaceae families. In parallel, in severe aGVHD patients, we showed a dramatic decrease in the levels of the main SFCAs: acetate (75.8%), propionate (95.8%), and butyrate (94.6%). Mild aGVHD patients were characterized by conserved levels of propionate and Blautia propionate producers. Butyrate was significantly decreased in all GI aGVHD stages, representing a potential diagnostic marker of the disease. Specific microbiota and metabolic alterations were thus associated with aGVHD severity and may be useful for diagnostic and pathophysiologic purposes.
Comparison of reduced-intensity conditioning regimens in patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia >45 years undergoing allogeneic stem cell transplantation-a retrospective study by the Acute Leukemia Working Party of EBMT
Bone marrow transplantation. 2020
The optimal reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) for patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) undergoing allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) remains unclear. We retrospectively analyzed 417 patients > 45 years with ALL in first complete remission who underwent a matched sibling or unrelated allo-HSCT and compared outcomes between fludarabine/busulfan (FLUBU, n = 127), fludarabine/melphalan (FLUMEL, n = 190), and fludarabine-TBI (FLUTBI, n = 100) conditioning. At 2 years, there were no differences between the groups in terms of cumulative incidence (CI) of relapse (40% for FLUBU vs 36% for FLUMEL vs 41% for FLUTBI, p = 0.21); transplant-related mortality (TRM) (18% for FLUBU, 22% for FLUMEL, 14% for FLUTBI, p = 0.09); overall survival (55% for FLUBU, 50% for FLUMEL, 60% for FLUTBI, p = 0.62) or leukemia-free survival (43% for FLUBU, 42% for FLUMEL, 45% for FLUTBI, p = 0.99), but GVHD-relapse-free survival was significantly lower in the FLUTBI group than FLUBU and FLUMEL group (18% vs 35% vs 28%, p = 0.02). However, this difference was lost in the multivariate analysis when adjusted for the in vivo T-cell depletion. Finally, the FLUMEL regimen was shown to be an independent risk factor for a higher TRM (HR 1.97, 95% CI 1.05-3.72, p = 0.04). We conclude that the three most popular RIC regimens yield similar transplant outcomes.
Cytogenetic risk score maintains its prognostic significance in AML patients with detectable measurable residual disease undergoing transplantation in remission: on behalf of the ALWP/EBMT
American journal of hematology. 2020
While evidence for measurable residual disease (MRD) is a harbinger of inferior outcome in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients referred for allogeneic stem cell transplantation (allo-SCT), the exact clinical trajectory of specific patient subsets in this clinical setting is undefined. Using a recently published prognostic cytogenetic model (Leukemia 2019) we evaluated whether this model applied also to studies of patients with positive MRD. The analysis comprised MRD(+) patients in first complete remission undergoing allo-SCT from a matched sibling donor or unrelated donor. Seven hundred and seventy-five patients were evaluated with a median follow-up duration of 22 months. Cytogenetic risk score was favorable, intermediate/FLT3(wt) intermediate/FLT3-ITD, and adverse in 15%, 28.3%, 37% and 19.7% of the patients, respectively. Favorable and intermediate/FLT3(wt) risk patients had 2-year leukemia-free survival rates of 78% and 61%, respectively, compared with only 50% and 37% for intermediate FLT3-ITD and adverse risk patients, respectively (p<0.0001). In multivariate analysis adverse and intermediate/FLT3-ITD risk patients were more likely to experience disease relapse compared with favorable risk patients [Hazard ratio (HR)=3.9, 95% confidence interval (CI), 2.1-7.3; p<0.0001, and HR=4.4, CI 95%, 2.4-7.8; p<0.0001, respectively]. The EBMT cytogenetic risk score is a valuable adjunct for risk stratification of MRD(+) AML patients. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Comparing transplant outcomes in ALL patients after haploidentical with PTCy or matched unrelated donor transplantation
Blood advances. 2020;4(9):2073-2083
We compared outcomes of 1461 adult patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) receiving hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) from a haploidentical (n = 487) or matched unrelated donor (MUD; n = 974) between January 2005 and June 2018. Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) prophylaxis was posttransplant cyclophosphamide (PTCy), calcineurin inhibitor (CNI), and mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) for haploidentical, and CNI with MMF or methotrexate with/without antithymoglobulin for MUDs. Haploidentical recipients were matched (1:2 ratio) with MUD controls for sex, conditioning intensity, disease stage, Philadelphia-chromosome status, and cytogenetic risk. In the myeloablative setting, day +28 neutrophil recovery was similar between haploidentical (87%) and MUD (88%) (P = .11). Corresponding rates after reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) were 84% and 88% (P = .47). The 3-month incidence of grade II-IV acute GVHD (aGVHD) and 3-year chronic GVHD (cGVHD) was similar after haploidentical compared with MUD: myeloablative conditioning, 33% vs 34% (P = .46) for aGVHD and 29% vs 31% for cGVHD (P = .58); RIC, 31% vs 30% (P = .06) for aGVHD and 24% vs 29% for cGVHD (P = .86). Among patients receiving myeloablative regimens, 3-year probabilities of overall survival were 44% and 51% with haploidentical and MUD (P = .56). Corresponding rates after RIC were 43% and 42% (P = .6). In this large multicenter case-matched retrospective analysis, despite the limitations of a registry-based study (ie, unavailability of key elements such as minimal residual disease testing), our analysis indicated that outcomes of patients with ALL undergoing HCT from a haploidentical donor were comparable with 8 of 8 MUD transplantations.
What is known?
Allogeneic stem cell transplant is a potentially curative treatment option for adults with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL). Transplant outcomes are, amongst other factors, dependent on optimal donor selection; despite a plethora of recent advances, donor availability is an area of unmet need for many patients. A fully HLA matched sibling donor is the preferred donor choice but is available in <30% of patients. Several studies have shown that comparable results can be achieved with a fully matched unrelated donor (MUD), but availability can be as low as 20% in non-Caucasian individuals. Haploidentical donor options are available for the vast majority of patients but historically their utility was limited by high rates of GvHD, treatment related morbidity and mortality and graft rejection. The addition of post-transplant cyclophosphamide (PtCy), calcineurin inhibitors (CNI) and mycofenolate mofetil (MMF) as GvHD prophylaxis has reduced these risks and is now a frequently employed approach for haploidentical haematopoietic stem cell transplant (HaploSCT) making it an attractive alternative to conventional donor transplant.
Several recent studies have compared MUD alloSCT and HaploSCT approaches in ALL in recent years. Most notably this has included an analysis of the European Bone Marrow Transplant (EBMT) group registry which included 1234 patients with ALL and shows comparable outcomes between HaploSCT and MUD alloSCT.
What did this paper set out to examine?
This retrospective multicentre cohort study aims to compare outcomes of HaploSCT & PtCy with MUD alloSCT in ALL in terms of engraftment, acute and chronic graft versus host disease (GvHD) incidence and severity, relapse free survival (RFS), non-relapse mortality (NRM) and overall survival (OS).
It is the first study to explicitly compare haploidentical allogeneic stem cell transplant (HaploSCT) with matched unrelated donor allogeneic stem cell transplant (MUD alloSCT) in terms of conditioning intensity, Philadelphia chromosome status and graft source. It also provides additional extensive, multinational data with matched pair analysis on outcomes of patients in both groups.
What did they show?
The authors compared data from 1461 adult patients (HaploSCT = 487 vs MUD = 974). Data from two separate registries was used: the EBMT registry alone was used for MUD alloSCT while the Haploidentical Transplant and Cellular Therapy Research Consortium (TCT-RC) was used in combination with Acute Leukaemia Working Party subgroup of the EBMT registry data for assessment of HaploSCT. The reason for using two databases is not explicitly stated although it is believed that this was done to increase sample size in the HaploSCT cohort.
Patients >18 years old with ALL over a 13.5-year period from January 2005 to June 2018 receiving their first alloSCT were included in the analysis. Exclusion criteria were fairly selected. GvHD prophylaxis was with PtCy, CNI and MMF in the HaploSCT group and with CNI and methotrexate or MMF in the MUD group. 64% of MUD patients also received ATG. Cohorts were matched at 1:2 (HaploSCT : MUD) for sex, cytogenetic risk, Philadelphia chromosome status, disease stage and intensity of conditioning (reduced intensity vs myeloablative). Statistical analysis was appropriate for the question to be answered.
RESULTS: HaploSCT and MUD alloSCT were comparable in terms of neutrophil engraftment, RFS and OS regardless of conditioning intensity, Philadelphia chromosome status and graft source. 3-year OS was 44% in the HaploSCT group vs 51% in the MUD group using myeloablative conditioning (p=5.56) with rates of 43% (HaploSCT) and 42% (MUD) for reduced intensity conditioning (p=5.6).
The overall incidence of acute and chronic GvHD was similar between the groups but there was an increased incidence in grade III-IV GvHD in HaploSCT when peripheral blood stem cells were used. Additionally, mortality form GvHD was higher in the MUD group. This is in keeping with results reported in the literature.
What are the implications for practice and for future work?
HaploSCT is becoming an increasingly attractive option for patients without matched sibling transplant. The comparable overall survival and now much more manageable GvHD risk will afford a previously difficult to manage cohort of patients a further option of curative treatment.
This study adds to the growing evidence base but did have some limitations. Firstly, the study is retrospective and uses registry-based data. While the registries used are of high quality, there are inherent concerns about missing data points and differences between the two databases used. The authors agreed that the variability of the condition regimes used added a further layer of complexity.
Prospective data with intention to treat analysis is required to further assess the comparability of HaploSCT and MUD for ALL patients.
Adult patients with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (n=1461)
HSCT from a haploidentical donor (n = 487)
HSCT from a matched unrelated donor (n = 974)
In the myeloablative setting, day +28 neutrophil recovery was similar between haploidentical (87%) and MUD (88%). Corresponding rates after reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) were 84% and 88%. The 3-month incidence of grade II-IV acute GVHD (aGVHD) and 3-year chronic GVHD (cGVHD) was similar after haploidentical compared with MUD: myeloablative conditioning, 33% vs 34% for aGVHD and 29% vs 31% for cGVHD; RIC, 31% vs 30% for aGVHD and 24% vs 29% for cGVHD. Among patients receiving myeloablative regimens, 3-year probabilities of overall survival were 44% and 51% with haploidentical and MUD. Corresponding rates after RIC were 43% and 42%.
Should transplantation still be considered for Ph1-negative myeloproliferative neoplasms in transformation?
Biology of blood and marrow transplantation : journal of the American Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation. 2020
BCR-ABL negative myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN) in transformation have a dismal prognosis, and allogeneic transplantation is thought to be the only curative therapeutic option. We retrospectively analyzed 53 molecularly annotated patients treated at Saint Louis Hospital (France), diagnosed between 2008 and 2018 with MPN in transformation. Median age was 65 years and median interval between MPN diagnosis and MPN transformation was 46 months. Median overall survival (OS) of the entire cohort after transformation was 7.1 months. Overall survival (OS) was better for patients treated by hypomethylating agents or by chemotherapy than those treated by best supportive care or single agent targeted therapy: 9.1 vs 1.5 months, p < 0.001. Patients treated by chemotherapy achieved more often complete remission than those treated by hypomethylating agents (68% vs 29%, p=0.02), and could be transplanted more frequently (59% vs 14%, p=0.02) but their median OS was similar. We then compared the outcome of transplanted vs. non-transplanted patients using Mantel-Byar's methodology and demonstrated that allogeneic transplantation did not improve survival. In multivariate analysis, independent prognosis factor of survival were Performance status at transformation (p < 0.01), initial treatment by hypomethylating agents or by chemotherapy (p=0.02), and the ability to achieve complete remission during the follow-up (p < 0.01). In conclusion, indication of transplantation for high-risk MPN should be discussed before transformation since transplantation rescued few patients after transformation.