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Abstract

Seventy-seven cytomegalovirus (CMV)-seronegative marrow transplant patients were randomized in a prospective controlled trial comparing the use of leukocyte-depleted platelets plus CMV-seronegative red blood cells with standard unscreened blood products for the prevention of primary CMV infection during the first 100 days after transplant. Eligible patients included CMV-seronegative patients undergoing autologous transplant or seronegative patients undergoing allogeneic transplant for aplastic anemia or non-hematologic malignancy who had seronegative marrow donors. Patients and marrow donors were serologically screened for CMV and randomized before conditioning for transplant and followed for CMV infection with weekly cultures of throat, urine, and blood and with weekly CMV serologies until day 100 after transplant. Leukocyte-depleted platelets were prepared by centrifugation, a procedure that removed greater than 99% of leukocytes. There were no CMV infections observed in 35 evaluable treatment patients compared with seven infections in 30 evaluable control patients (P = .0013). There was no statistically significant difference in the mean number of platelet concentrates in the treatment patients (164 concentrates) compared with the control patients (126 concentrates). Leukocyte-depleted platelets plus CMV-seronegative red blood cells are highly effective in preventing primary CMV infection after marrow transplant.