AUTOLOGOUS STEM CELL TRANSPLANTATION IN ELDERLY ACUTE MYELOID LEUKEMIA

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Gert J. Ossenkoppele *
Jeroen J.W.M. Janssen
Peter C. Huijgens
(*) Corresponding Author:
Gert J. Ossenkoppele | g.ossenkoppele@vumc.nl

Abstract

Treatment outcome in elderly Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) is still very disappointing. Although complete remission rate is around 50-60% the 2 years survival is only in the magnitude of 10-20%. This is mainly due to an overrepresentation of adverse prognostic factors present in elderly AML. As relapses emerge from residual disease present after chemotherapy, intensification of treatment could emerge as a rational strategy. Intensification of chemotherapy by increasing the dose of  anthracyclines or addition of gemtuzumab ozogamycin (Mylotarg) to standard chemotherapy indeed has proved to be of advantage in elderly AML. In younger AML autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation (AuPBSCT) as post remission treatment in comparison to intensive consolidation chemotherapy has been investigated in a few randomized studies. AuPBSCT showed reduced relapse rates with low non-relapse mortality rates. In elderly AML intensification by AuPBSCT also have been performed although randomized studies are lacking. Nevertheless, in the previous years various reports have suggested the potential utility of AuHSCT in AML of the elderly with encouraging results, albeit mostly in highly selected patients. Acceptable toxicity and a relatively low rate of transplant-related mortality has been notified. However relapses occurred  which, irrespective of age, still remains the major cause of treatment failure of AuHSCT in AML. In this review we summarize the experience of AuPBSCT in elderly AML.


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