PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The remarkable improvement in the prognosis of children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) has been mainly achieved through the administration of risk-adapted therapy, including allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). This paper reviews the current indications to HSCT in ALL children, as well as the type of donor and conditioning regimens commonly used. Finally, it will focus on future challenges in immunotherapy.
RECENT FINDINGS: As our comprehension of disease-specific risk factors improves, indications to HSCT continue to evolve. Future studies will answer the year-old question on the best conditioning regimen to be used in this setting, while a recent randomized controlled study fixed the optimal anti-thymocyte globulin dose in unrelated donor HSCT. HSCT, the oldest immunotherapy used in clinical practice, still represents the gold standard consolidation treatment for a number of pediatric patients with high-risk/relapsed ALL. New immunotherapies hold the promise of further improving outcomes in this setting.