The infusion of lymphocytes from the original marrow donor (donor lymphocyte infusions [DLI]) is remarkably effective in treating chronic myeloid leukemia in relapse after allogeneic stem cell transplantation. DLI are less effective in acute leukemia and other hematologic tumors, but the use of interleukin-2 in conjunction with DLI after allograft may increase the response rate. The use of DLI to treat certain solid tumors is under investigation. In contrast, the value of donor lymphocytes for treating infectious complications post-transplant and graft failure has been established. The major drawback of DLI remains graft-versus-host disease, but novel regimens of administration and/or selective manipulation of donor cells prior to infusion have reduced its incidence. Further progresses in this area will help to establish the role of nonmyeloablative conditioning for allografting.
Department of Hematology, Imperial College School of Medicine, Hammersmith Hospital, London, United Kingdom
Correspondence to Francesco Dazzi MD, Department of Hematology, Imperial College School of Medicine, Hammersmith Hospital, Du Cane Road, London W12 0NN, United Kingdom; e-mail: email@example.com