Higher Dose of Invariant Natural Killer T Cells Improves HCT Outcomes

Allogeneic HCT using peripheral blood stem cell (PBSC) grafts have better outcomes when the grafts contain large doses of invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells, according to a single-center study of 80 consecutive patients transplanted between 2010 and 2013. In patients receiving iNKT cell doses above and below the median, GVHD-free and progression-free survival (GPFS) were 49% vs. 22%, respectively (p=0.007). In multivariate analysis, iNKT cell dose was the only factor with a significant impact on GPFS (hazard ratio=0.48; 95% CI, 0.27-0.85, p=0.01). Improved GPFS is mainly attributed to a decreased risk of relapse. The authors note that their results “may pave the way for prospective and active interventions to manipulate graft content in order to improve HCT outcome.”

Malard F, et al. Blood