Blood Journal
Leading the way in experimental and clinical research in hematology

Patient characteristics associated with successful mobilizing and autografting of peripheral blood progenitor cells in malignant lymphoma

  1. R Haas,
  2. R Mohle,
  3. S Fruhauf,
  4. H Goldschmidt,
  5. B Witt,
  6. M Flentje,
  7. M Wannenmacher, and
  8. W Hunstein
  1. Department of Internal Medicine V, University of Heidelberg, Germany.


For patients with advanced-stage or poor-prognosis malignant lymphoma, high-dose therapy with peripheral blood progenitor cell (PBPC) support may become a first-line treatment. The duration of severe cytopenia in this setting is inversely related to the number of PBPCs autografted. In a retrospective analysis, we therefore looked for factors influencing the yield of PBPCs in 61 patients (16 with high-grade and 29 with low-/intermediate-grade non-Hodgkin's lymphoma [NHL], and 16 with Hodgkin's disease) who received cytotoxic chemotherapy and filgrastim (R-metHuG-CSF, 300 micrograms/d; median, 4.2 micrograms/kg/d; range, 2.7 to 6.6 micrograms/kg/d; subcutaneously). Sixteen patients had active disease, while 45 were in partial remission (PR) or complete remission (CR) after conventional therapy. A median of three leukaphereses (range, one to 10) resulted in a median of 5.7 x 10(6) CD34+ cells/kg (range, 0.03 to 31.1 x 10(6)). Previous cytotoxic chemotherapy and irradiation adversely affected the yield of CD34+ cells. Each cycle of chemotherapy is associated with an average decrease of 0.2 x 10(6) CD34+ cells/kg per leukapheresis in nonirradiated patients, while large-field radiotherapy reduces the collection efficiency by an average of 1.8 x 10(6)/kg CD34+ cells. The collection efficiency was also significantly lower in patients with Hodgkin's disease. However, except for one, all had been previously irradiated. In contrast, age, sex, disease status, bone marrow involvement during mobilization, and the time since the last chemotherapy or radiotherapy were not significantly related to the collection efficiency. Following high-dose conditioning therapy, 42 patients were autografted with filgrastim-mobilized PBPCs. Hematological recovery (neutrophils > or = 0.5 x 10(9)/L and an unsupported platelet count > or = 20 x 10(9)/L) within 2 weeks was observed in patients autografted with > or = 2.5 x 10(6) CD34+ cells/kg. In seven patients, the quantity of CD34+ cells reinfused was below this threshold. They required a median of 17 days (range, 11 to 34) and 31 days (range, 13 to 141) for neutrophil and platelet recovery, respectively. If autografting with PBPCs in malignant lymphoma with poor prognosis is being considered, mobilization and harvesting should be planned early after initial diagnosis to avoid exhaustion of hematopoiesis by cumulative toxicity.