Graft-Versus-Tumor Effects in Advanced Malignancies

A study of a minimal-intensity pre-transplant conditioning regimen consisting of low-dose total body irradiation with or without fludarabine has shown that it can induce strong graft-versus-tumor (GVT) effects leading to lasting remissions in 45% to 75% of patients. The researchers note that this very low intensity regimen “allows the purest assessment of GVT effects apart from conditioning and GVHD not augmented by regimen-related toxicities.” Five-year survival in 1,092 patients transplanted for advanced hematologic malignancies ranged from 25% to 60%, with GVT effects seen across all disease stages, except for advanced ALL.

Storb R, et al. J Clin Oncol

Accompanying audio editorial by Dr. Jane F. Apperley