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Chronic graft versus host disease

Baird, Kristina; Pavletic, Steven Zb

doi: 10.1097/01.moh.0000245689.47333.ff
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation
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Purpose of review Chronic graft versus host disease is a debilitating and often fatal complication of allogeneic stem cell transplantation. The purpose of this review is to overview this disease and highlight recent findings in the literature over the past year.

Recent findings A new focus on chronic graft versus host disease as a long-term complication of transplantation has resulted in increased research activity in this disease. Here we review the recent in-vitro and clinical studies that focus on the pathophysiology of the disease, treatment and prevention.

Summary As more patients undergo and survive allogeneic stem cell transplantation more attention is being focused on the study of chronic graft versus host disease. Although the pathophysiology is still controversial, recent advances have been made in our understanding of this disease, including the balance of T helper type 1 and 2 cells, the role of B cells and autoantibodies, graft manipulation and prophylaxis, which may lead to advances in treatment and prevention. The series of recent publications put forward by the National Institutes of Health consensus project on criteria for clinical trials are expected to advance the standards and uniformity of chronic graft versus host disease clinical research.

aPediatric Oncology Branch, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA

bExperimental Transplantation and Immunology Branch, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA

Correspondence to Steven Pavletic MD, Head, Graft-Versus-Host and Autoimmunity Unit, Experimental Transplantation and Immunology Branch, National Cancer Institute, 9000 Rockville Pike, CRC 3-3330, Bethesda, MD 20892-1203, USA Tel: +1 301 402 4899; fax: +1 301 480 3444; e-mail: pavletis@mail.nih.gov

This research was supported by the Intramural Research program of the NIH, National Cancer Institute, Center for Cancer Research.

The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and do not represent the official position of the National Institutes of Health or the US government.

© 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.