Background: Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation has proved to be an effective therapeutic option in various hematologic neoplastic disorders. Because patients with advanced cutaneous T-cell lymphoma have a poor prognosis, with minimal possibilities of sustained remission, we studied the therapeutic potential of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Observations: Three young patients with refractory tumor stage mycosis fungoides underwent allogeneic HLA-matched sibling transplantation with combined marrow and CD34-enriched peripheral blood stem cell transplantation after cytoreductive chemotherapy and total-body irradiation. Complete and sustained clinical and histologic remission was achieved in 2 patients, and both remain disease free 4 1/2 years and 15 months later. One patient was in complete remission for 9 months, followed by limited cutaneous recurrence. Mild graft-vs-host disease and graft-vs-tumor effect have contained the recurring disease as a low-grade process. Conclusions: Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation has the potential for sustained remission and the possibility of cure for young patients with advanced and recalcitrant cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. Even in the absence of complete remission, an allogeneic graft-vs-tumor effect may provide an immune mechanism to control the malignant T-cell process and alter the natural history of disease.
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