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Update on prevention of cytomegalovirus in hematopoietic cell transplantation

Dadwal, Sanjeet S.

Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases: February 2019 - Volume 32 - Issue 1 - p 63–68
doi: 10.1097/QCO.0000000000000517

Purpose of review Cytomegalovirus infection (CMVi) has been the troll of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (allo-HCT). Over the last 4 decades various approaches have been adopted to minimize the burden from CMVi. There has been major advancement in the management of CMVi in HCT within the last few years that is poised to change the approaches employed in preventing and managing CMVi. This review will summarize recent advances and potential future development in the management of CMV in HCT.

Recent finding The major development has been the approval of letermovir for the prevention of CMVi in allo-HCT recipients. Also, with the potential availability of tests that can determine host CMV immunity a risk adapted approach to CMV prevention may become a possibility.

Summary The landscape of CMV prevention is about to change with the approval of a new anti-CMV antiviral that is safe and effective. However, the prophylaxis may lead to late onset CMVi in the context of ongoing risk factors after stopping prophylaxis and measures to counter this shifting epidemiology will need further research; such as extending the prophylaxis in high-risk patients vs. immunotherapy with vaccination and T-cell therapy.

Division of Infectious Disease, City of Hope National Medical Center, Duarte, California, USA

Correspondence to Sanjeet S. Dadwal, Division of Infectious Disease, City of Hope National Medical Center, 1500 East Duarte Road, Modular 1 West, Duarte, CA 91010, USA. Tel: +1 626 218 8202; e-mail:

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