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Antibodies from rabbits reduce risks associated with unrelated donor stem cell transplantation
Date:7/9/2012

ed no survival differences between the two groups of patients regardless of age or diagnosis. Relapse rates and incidence of GVHD were also similar. Chronic GVHD, on the other hand, was diagnosed less frequently in patients in the ATG group. In addition, the researchers noticed a higher rate of infections in patients receiving the highest dose of ATG, but this risk was diminished in patients who received slightly lower doses.

This study is one of the first to use ATG in stem cell transplantation. ATG works by reducing the number of circulating T-lymphocytes, a key component of the immune system. It is primarily used in organ transplantation to prevent patients' immune systems from rejecting transplanted tissue. It is also used to treat aplastic anemia, a condition where the bone marrow does not create enough new cells. Currently, there are two types of ATG agents available for clinical use. The one used in this study is derived from rabbit antibodies while the other is derived from horse antibodies.

"Our study results should serve as a guide for designing future clinical trials using ATG to improve outcomes in unrelated donor stem cell transplants," says Toor. "Our findings are encouraging. If many of the risks commonly associated with unrelated donor stem cell transplants are reduced, transplantation becomes an option for more patients."


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Contact: John Wallace
wallacej@vcu.edu
804-628-1550
Virginia Commonwealth University
Source:Eurekalert

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