A Study of a Reduced-Intensity Conditioning Regimen Followed by Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation for Patients with Hematologic Malignancies Using Campath-1H as Part of a Graft-versus-Host Disease Strategy
Graft vs Host Disease
Stem Cell Transplantation
Nonmyeloablative transplantation (NMT) is intended to be less toxic than traditional allografts, but such regimens as fludarabine/melphalan still pose a significant risk of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). We used Campath-1H in an attempt to reduce the risk of GVHD in NMT. Patients with hematologic malignancies suitable for allogeneic transplantation underwent transplantation using a regimen of fludarabine 30 mg/m(2) on days -5 to -2 (total, 120 mg/m(2)), total body irradiation of 200 cGy on day -1, and Campath-1H 20 mg/day on days -7 to -3 (total dose, 100 mg). After loss of graft in 5 of the first 6 patients, the protocol was amended by decreasing the Campath-1H dose to 20 mg on days -4 and -3 and 10 mg on day -2 (total dose, 50 mg) for all subsequent patients. GVHD prophylaxis consisted of only cyclosporine, due to the immunosuppressive effect of Campath-1H. Patients received prophylactic acyclovir, fluconazole, and a quinolone. Other requirements included creatinine clearance > or = 25 mL/min, diffusing capacity > or = 45% of predicted, and cardiac ejection fraction > or = 40%. Twenty-five patients with hematologic malignancies entered the study. The median age was 40 years (range, 26-71 years). Median time to engraftment (defined as a neutrophil count of 500 mm(3) and a platelet count of 20,000 mm(3) without platelet support on at least 2 days) was 19 days (range, 9-32 days). All patients who were treated after the amendment engrafted with 90%-100% donor cells by day 100 except for 2 early deaths. Acute GVHD developed in 40% of the patients. Patients who underwent related transplants developed GVHD after donor lymphocyte infusions for poor engraftment or relapse whereas those undergoing unrelated transplants developed GVHD de novo. Two patients (8%) developed chronic GVHD, and 48% had cytomegalovirus reactivation, which was easily managed medically. Nonrelapse mortality within the first 12 months was 12%; 32% of the patients survived at a median of 269 days. We conclude that Campath-1H, fludarabine, and melphalan is a reasonable preparative regimen for reduced-intensity transplantation with a low nonrelapse mortality, but that issues of GVHD remain problematic, due to either the use of donor lymphocyte infusions or the use of volunteer unrelated donors.