International Journal of Hematology

DOI: 10.1007/s12185-019-02610-4 Pages: 463-469

Feasibility of salvage cord blood transplantation using a fludarabine, melphalan, and low-dose anti-thymocyte globulin conditioning regimen

1. Saiseikai Maebashi Hospital, Leukemia Research Center

Correspondence to:
Takumi Hoshino
Tel: +81-27-252-6011



Primary graft failure (PGF) is a lethal complication that occurs early after allogeneic stem cell transplantation (allo-SCT). Cord blood transplantation (CBT) is a potential re-transplantation option. Total body irradiation (TBI) is often incorporated into the pre-salvage CBT conditioning regimen following PGF; however, patients experiencing PGF are not always amenable to TBI, and non-TBI regimens for salvage CBT should be established. Here, we report five patients with hematologic malignancies who received salvage CBT for PGF following a non-TBI regimen using fludarabine (Flu), melphalan (Mel), and low-dose anti-thymocyte globulin (ATG). The median intervals between the failed allo-SCT and salvage CBT, as well as between the diagnosis of PGF and salvage CBT, were 37 days and 8 days, respectively. The median neutrophil recovery period was 21 days (range 18–21 days). Four of five patients achieved neutrophil engraftment following salvage CBT; all four exhibited sustained engraftment with complete donor chimerism. Three of the five patients were alive after a median follow-up time of 907 days (range 315–909 days) post-salvage CBT; two patients died of causes unrelated to recurrence. These data suggest that CBT following the non-TBI regimen described here is feasible in patients with PGF.

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