Hematopoietic and immune recovery after transplantation of cord blood progenitor cells in children

F. Locatelli, R. Maccario, P. Comoli, F. Bertolini, G. Giorgiani, D. Montagna, F. Bonetti, P. De Stefano, G. Rondini, G. Sirchia, F. Severi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Matched related cord blood transplantation (CBT) has been successfully used to rescue patients undergoing myeloablative therapy. However, few data are available on the kinetics of hematological and immunological reconstitution of CBT recipients. We have investigated the hematological engraftment and immune recovery following related CBT in three patients, with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, aged 10, 9 and 7 years and with a body weight of 31, 40 and 25 kg, respectively. All patients engrafted and none experienced acute or chronic graft-versus-host disease. The time needed to achieve granulocyte recovery was 13, 26 and 29 days, respectively and platelet recovery occurred in 28, 49 and 51 days. All patients presented a marked increase of HbF, the values observed being much greater than those documented in patients given marrow transplantation and comparable with those observed in normal children in the first year of age. The recovery of T cell immunity, as well as that of natural killer subpopulations, mimicked that described in BMT recipients, a quicker return of CD8 + T cells determining the characteristic inversion of CD4/CD8 ratio. An impressive increase in the percentage and absolute number of B lymphocytes, apparently not related to viral infections, was demonstrable in all three cases. These data suggest that CBT recipients can experience a slight delay in hematological recovery when compared with patients given BMT. The reconstitution of erythropoiesis seems to recapitulate the ontogenetic pattern and the kinetics of recovery of the immune system reproduce that observed after BMT with the peculiarity of B cell expansion in peripheral blood.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1095-1101
Number of pages7
JournalBone Marrow Transplantation
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1996


  • Cord blood transplantation
  • Hematological recovery
  • Immune recovery
  • Immunoglobulins
  • Lymphocyte maturation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Transplantation


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