Recombinant human soluble tumor necrosis factor receptor fusion protein as treatment for steroid refractory graft-versus-host disease following allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation

Alessandro Busca, Franco Locatelli, Filippo Marmont, Cristina Ceretto, Michele Falda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Etanercept is a recombinant human soluble tumor necrosis factor (TNF-γ) receptor fusion protein that inhibits TNF-γ, a major mediator in the pathogenesis of gratt-versus-host disease (GVHD). The purpose of our study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of etanercept therapy in 21 patients with steroid-refractory acute GVHD (aGVHD) (n = 13) and chronic GVHD (cGVHD) (n = 8). Etanercept 25 mg was given subcutaneously twice weekly for 4 weeks followed by 25 mg weekly for 4 weeks. At the time of initiation of etanercept, 14 patients had skin, 13 had gastro-intestinal, 5 had liver, 5 had pulmonary, and 4 had oral involvement. Twelve patients (57%) completed 12 doses of therapy. Overall, 11 of 21 patients (52%) responded to the treatment with etanercept, including 6 patients (46%) with aGVHD [n = 4 complete response (CR), n = 2 partial response (PR)] and 5 patients (62%) with cGVHD (n = 1 CR, n = 4 PR). Clinical responses were most commonly seen in patients with refractory gut aGVHD with 55% of the patients having a CR and 9% having a PR. CMV reactivation occurred in 48% of patients, bacterial infections in 14% of patients, and fungal infections in 19% of patients. Fourteen patients (67%) were alive after a median follow-up of 429 days (range 71-1007 days) since initiation of etanercept. Seven patients died, 3 of infections, 2 of refractory aGVHD, and 2 of disease progression. In conclusion, our preliminary data indicate that etanercept is well tolerated and can induce a high response rate in patients with steroid-refractory aGVHD and cGVHD, particularly in the setting of Gl involvement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-52
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Hematology
Volume82
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2007

Keywords

  • Gratt-versus-host disease
  • Stem cell transplantation
  • TNF-α

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology

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