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See detailLimited impact of imatinib in a murine model of sclerodermatous chronic graft-versus-host disease (scl-cGVHD)
Fransolet, Gilles ULg; Belle, Ludovic; SOMJA, Joan ULg et al

Conference (2016, December 08)

- Introduction: Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains one of the major complications following haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Approximately 15% of the patients with chronic GVHD ... [more ▼]

- Introduction: Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains one of the major complications following haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Approximately 15% of the patients with chronic GVHD develop the sclerodermatous form of the disease characterized by multiple organ fibrosis and loss of skin elasticity. Several studies have shown the potential benefits of imatinib, a tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI), as a treatment of fibrosis in cGVHD due to its ability to inhibit simultaneously PDGF-R and c-Abl pathways which are both involved in fibrosis mechanisms. - Aims: Some early-phase clinical studies have assessed the impact of TKIs in patients with steroid-refractory cGVHD. Unfortunately, these studies yielded to conflicting results underlying the importance of re-assessing the impact of imatinib in scl-cGVHD pre-clinical models. This work investigates the possible benefits of imatinib on fibrosis in a murine model of sclerodermatous chronic GVHD (scl-cGVHD). - Methods and results: Lethally irradiated Balb/cJ mice (7 Gy TBI) were injected i.v. with 1.106 or 10.106 bone marrow cells and 2.106 or 70.106 splenocytes from B10.D2 donnor mice (Moderate and Classical scl-cGVHD models respectively). Mice were then treated with sterile water or imatinib (150 mg/kg/day) by oral gavage from day +7 to day +52 following transplantation. cGVHD severity was assessed three times/week with a scoring system encompassing 5 criteria (mice posture, weight loss, activity, hair loss, skin integrity ; 0-1-2 point(s)/criteria). Skin biopsies were performed on day +29 following transplantation to assess phosphorylation of c-Abl (TGF-β pathway) and PDGF receptor. Our results show that imatinib failed to prevent/improve GVHD with a similar evolution of the GVHD severity with no differences between groups (neither in moderate cGVHD model, nor in the classical cGVHD model). Mice weight loss during the experiments was also comparable between groups in both models of cGVHD. In the classical model, histological analyses indicate a significant reduction of the phosphorylation level of the PDGR receptor (p = 0.0079). In vivo cell proliferation assay with CFSE were also performed and showed a reduced proliferation of T cells and subsets (CD4, CD8 and Tregs) in spleen, lymph nodes, bone marrow and blood after imatinib treatment. Finally, FACS analyses performed on days +21 and +35 after transplantation did not show any differences in the absolute T-cell counts. - Conclusions: Although we have observed a decreased phosphorylation level of PDGR receptor and less proliferation of T cells and subsets in vivo, imatinib failed to alleviate scl-cGVHD both in moderate and classical murine models of scl-cGVHD. [less ▲]

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See detailAzacytidine prevents experimental xenogeneic graft-versus-host disease without abrogating graft-versus-leukemia effects
Ehx, Grégory ULg; Fransolet, Gilles ULg; de Leval, Laurence ULg et al

Conference (2016, November 18)

The demethylating agent 5-azacytidine (AZA) has proven its efficacy as treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. In addition, AZA can demethylate FOXP3 intron 1 (FOXP3i1) leading ... [more ▼]

The demethylating agent 5-azacytidine (AZA) has proven its efficacy as treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. In addition, AZA can demethylate FOXP3 intron 1 (FOXP3i1) leading to the generation of regulatory T cells (Treg). Here, we investigated the impact of AZA on xenogeneic graft-versus-host disease (xGVHD) and graft-versus-leukemia effects in a humanized murine model of transplantation (human PBMCs-infused NSG mice), and described the impact of the drug on human T cells in vivo. We observed that AZA improved both survival and xGVHD scores. Further, AZA significantly decreased human T-cell proliferation as well as IFN-γ and TNF-α serum levels, and reduced the expression of GRANZYME B and PERFORIN 1 by cytotoxic T cells. In addition, AZA significantly increased Treg frequency through hypomethylation of FOXP3i1 as well as increased Treg proliferation. The later was subsequent to higher STAT5 signaling in Treg from AZA-treated mice, which resulted from higher IL-2 secretion by conventional T cells from AZA-treated mice itself secondary to demethylation of the IL-2 gene promoter by AZA. Importantly, Tregs harvested from AZA-treated mice were suppressive and stable over time since they persisted at high frequency in secondary transplant experiments. Finally, graft-versus-leukemia effects (assessed by growth inhibition of THP-1 cells, transfected to express the luciferase gene) were not abrogated by AZA. In summary, our data demonstrate that AZA prevents xGVHD without abrogating graft-versus-leukemia effects. These findings could serve of basis for further studies of GVHD prevention by AZA in acute myeloid leukemia patients offered an allogeneic transplantation. [less ▲]

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See detailLimited impact of imatinib in a murine model of sclerodermic chronic graft-versus-host disease
Belle, Ludovic; Fransolet, Gilles ULg; SOMJA, Joan ULg et al

Poster (2016, November 17)

Background: Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains one of the major complications following haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Approximately 15% of the patients with chronic GVHD develop ... [more ▼]

Background: Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains one of the major complications following haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Approximately 15% of the patients with chronic GVHD develop the sclerodermatous form of the disease characterized by multiple organ fibrosis and loss of skin elasticity. Several studies have shown the potential benefits of imatinib, a tyrosine kinase inhibitor, as a treatment of fibrosis in cGVHD due to its ability to inhibit simultaneously PDGF-R and c-Abl pathways which are both involved in fibrosis mechanisms. This work investigates the possible benefits of imatinib on fibrosis in a murine model of sclerodermatous chronic GVHD (sclcGVHD). Methods: Lethally irradiated Balb/cJ mice (7 Gy TBI) were injected i.v. with 10.106 bone marrow cells and 70.106 splenocytes from B10.D2 donnor mice. Mice were then treated with sterile water or imatinib (150 mg/kg/day) by oral gavage from day +7 to day +52 following transplantation. GVHD severity was assessed three times/week with a scoring system encompassing 5 criteria (mice posture, weight loss, activity, hair loss, skin integrity ; 0-1-2 point(s)/criteria). Results: Our results show that imatinib failed to prevent/improve GVHD with a similar evolution of the GVHD severity with no differences between groups. Histological analyses indicate a significant reduction of the phosphorylation level of the PDGR receptor (p = 0,033) and a trend to a decreased level of phosphorylated c-Abl (p = 0,1854). In vivo cell proliferation assay with CFSE were also performed and showed a reduced proliferation of T cells and subsets (CD4, CD8 and Tregs) in spleen, lymph nodes, bone marrow and blood after imatinib treatment. Finally, FACS analyses performed on days +21 and +35 after transplantation did not show any differences in the absolute T-cell counts. Conclusion: Although we have observed a decreased phosphorylation level of PDGR receptor and less proliferation of T cells and subsets in vivo, imatinib failed to alleviate scl-cGVHD in a murine model of severe scl-cGVHD. [less ▲]

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See detailAzacytidine prevents experimental xenogeneic graft-versus-host disease without abrogating graft-versus-leukemia effects
Ehx, Grégory ULg; Fransolet, Gilles ULg; de Leval, Laurence ULg et al

Poster (2016, October 14)

The demethylating agent 5-azacytidine (AZA) has proven its efficacy as treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. In addition, AZA can demethylate FOXP3 intron 1 (FOXP3i1) leading ... [more ▼]

The demethylating agent 5-azacytidine (AZA) has proven its efficacy as treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. In addition, AZA can demethylate FOXP3 intron 1 (FOXP3i1) leading to the generation of regulatory T cells (Treg). Here, we investigated the impact of AZA on xenogeneic graft-versus-host disease (xGVHD) and graft-versus-leukemia effects in a humanized murine model of transplantation (human PBMCs-infused NSG mice), and described the impact of the drug on human T cells in vivo. We observed that AZA improved both survival and xGVHD scores. Further, AZA significantly decreased human T-cell proliferation as well as IFN-γ and TNF-α serum levels, and reduced the expression of GRANZYME B and PERFORIN 1 by cytotoxic T cells. In addition, AZA significantly increased Treg frequency through hypomethylation of FOXP3i1 as well as increased Treg proliferation. The later was subsequent to higher STAT5 signaling in Treg from AZA-treated mice, which resulted from higher IL-2 secretion by conventional T cells from AZA-treated mice itself secondary to demethylation of the IL-2 gene promoter by AZA. Importantly, Tregs harvested from AZA-treated mice were suppressive and stable over time since they persisted at high frequency in secondary transplant experiments. Finally, graft-versus-leukemia effects (assessed by growth inhibition of THP-1 cells, transfected to express the luciferase gene) were not abrogated by AZA. In summary, our data demonstrate that AZA prevents xGVHD without abrogating graft-versus-leukemia effects. These findings could serve of basis for further studies of GVHD prevention by AZA in acute myeloid leukemia patients offered an allogeneic transplantation. [less ▲]

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See detailAutologous osteoblastic cells (PREOBy) versus concentrated bone marrow implantation in osteonecrosis of the femoral head: A randomized study
HAUZEUR, Jean-Philippe ULg; Tungouz, Michel; LECHANTEUR, Chantal ULg et al

in Revue de Chirurgie Orthopédique et Traumatologique (2016), 102(Issue 7), 73

In non-traumatic osteonecrosis of the femoral head (ONFH), implantation of bone marrow concentrate (BMC) containing mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) could delay ONFH progression and improve symptoms (Hernigou ... [more ▼]

In non-traumatic osteonecrosis of the femoral head (ONFH), implantation of bone marrow concentrate (BMC) containing mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) could delay ONFH progression and improve symptoms (Hernigou 2002, Gangji 2004). The next step was to assess the hypothesis that a population of autologous osteoblastic cells (OB) consisting in a more differentiated cell than MSC, could be more efficacious than BMC in early stages ON. [less ▲]

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See detailAzacytidine mitigates experimental sclerodermic chronic graft-versus-host disease
Fransolet, Gilles ULg; Ehx, Grégory ULg; SOMJA, Joan ULg et al

in Journal of Hematology & Oncology (2016), 9

Background <br />Previous studies have demonstrated that regulatory T cells (Tregs) play a protective role in the pathogenesis of chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD). Tregs constitutively express ... [more ▼]

Background <br />Previous studies have demonstrated that regulatory T cells (Tregs) play a protective role in the pathogenesis of chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD). Tregs constitutively express the gene of the transcription factor Foxp3 whose CNS2 region is heavily methylated in conventional CD4+ T cells (CD4+Tconvs) but demethylated in Tregs. <br />Methods <br />Here, we assessed the impact of azacytidine (AZA) on cGVHD in a well-established murine model of sclerodermic cGVHD (B10.D2 (H-2d) → BALB/cJ (H-2d)). <br />Results <br />The administration of AZA every 48 h from day +10 to day +30 at the dose of 0.5 mg/kg or 2 mg/kg mitigated chronic GVHD. Further, AZA-treated mice exhibited higher blood and thymic Treg frequencies on day +35, as well as higher demethylation levels of the Foxp3 enhancer and the IL-2 promoter in splenocytes at day +52. Interestingly, Tregs from AZA-treated mice expressed more frequently the activation marker CD103 on day +52. AZA-treated mice had also lower counts of CD4+Tconvs and CD8+ T cells from day +21 to day +35 after transplantation, as well as a lower proportion of CD4+Tconvs expressing the Ki67 antigen on day +21 demonstrating an anti-proliferating effect of the drug on T cells. <br />Conclusions <br />Our results indicate that AZA prevented sclerodermic cGVHD in a well-established murine model of cGVHD. These data might serve as the basis for a pilot study of AZA administration for cGVHD prevention in patients at high risk for cGVHD. [less ▲]

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See detailAdministration of Third-Party Mesenchymal Stromal Cells at the Time of Kidney Transplantation: Interim Safety Analysis at One-Year Follow-Up
Erpicum, Pauline ULg; WEEKERS, Laurent ULg; DETRY, Olivier ULg et al

Conference (2016, April 28)

Objective. Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) therapy has been suggested in kidney transplantation (KTx). We report on the 1-year follow-up of an open-label phase I trial using MSC at the time of KTx ... [more ▼]

Objective. Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) therapy has been suggested in kidney transplantation (KTx). We report on the 1-year follow-up of an open-label phase I trial using MSC at the time of KTx. Methods. On postoperative day 3 (D3), third-party MSC (~2.0x106/kg) were administered to 7 non-immunized first-transplant recipients from deceased donors, under standard immunosuppression (Basiliximab, Tacrolimus, MMF and steroids). No HLA matching was required for MSC donors. In parallel, 7 comparable KTx recipients were included as controls. Written informed consent was obtained from all participants. Results. No hemodynamic or immune-allergic side-effect was noted at the time of MSC injection. Still, 1 patient with a history of ischemic heart disease had a NSTEMI ~3h after MSC infusion. Four MSC patients presented with CMV reactivation within 165 ± 96 days post KTx, whereas 3 controls had positive polyoma-BK viremia within 92 ± 4d post KTx. Three MSC patients were affected by pneumonia within 269 ± 98d post KTx, whereas 3 controls had urinary infection within 48 ± 43d post KTx. No MSC engraftment syndrome was observed. At D14, eGFR in MSC and control groups was 47.1 ± 6.8 and 39.7 ± 5.9 ml/min, respectively (p, 0.05). At 1 year, eGFR in MSC and control groups was 43.1 ± 17.8 and 53.9 ± 13.4 ml/min, respectively (p, 0.25). At 3-month protocol biopsy, no rejection was evidenced in MSC or control patients. Later on, 1 acute rejection was diagnosed at D330 in 1 MSC patient. No biopsy-proven AR was noted in controls. Three patients developed anti-HLA antibodies against MSC (n=1) or shared kidney/MSC (n=2) mismatches. Conclusions. MSC infusion was safe in all patients except one. Incidence of opportunist and non-opportunist infections was similar in both MSC and control groups. No MSC engraftment syndrome was documented. No difference in eGFR was found at 1 year post KTx. Putative immunization against MSC was observed in 3 patients. [less ▲]

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See detailNovel approaches for preventing acute graftversus- host disease after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation
SERVAIS, Sophie ULg; BEGUIN, Yves ULg; Delens, Loïc ULg et al

in Expert Opinion on Investigational Drugs (2016), 9

Introduction Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (alloHSCT) offers potential curative treatment for a wide range of malignant and nonmalignant hematological disorders. However, its success ... [more ▼]

Introduction Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (alloHSCT) offers potential curative treatment for a wide range of malignant and nonmalignant hematological disorders. However, its success may be limited by post-transplant acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD), a systemic syndrome in which donor’s immune cells attack healthy tissues in the immunocompromised host. aGVHD is one of the main causes of morbidity and mortality after alloHSCT. Despite standard GVHD prophylaxis regimens, aGVHD still develops in approximately 40–60% of alloHSCT recipients. Areas covered In this review, after a brief summary of current knowledge on the pathogenesis of aGVHD, the authors review the current combination of a calcineurin inhibitor with an antimetabolite with or without added anti-thymocyte globulin (ATG) and emerging strategies for GVHD prevention. Expert opinion A new understanding of the involvement of cytokines, intracellular signaling pathways, epigenetics and immunoregulatory cells in GVHD pathogenesis will lead to new standards for aGVHD prophylaxis allowing better prevention of severe aGVHD without affecting graft-versus-tumor effects. [less ▲]

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See detailAzacytidine Enhances Regulatory T-Cells In Vivo and Prevents Experimental Xenogeneic Graft-Versus-Host Disease
Ehx, Grégory ULg; Fransolet, Gilles ULg; de Leval, Laurence ULg et al

in Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation (2016, March), 22(3), 393

Background. The demethylating agent 5-azacytidine (AZA) has proven its efficacy as treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. In addition, AZA can demethylate FOXP3 intron 1 ... [more ▼]

Background. The demethylating agent 5-azacytidine (AZA) has proven its efficacy as treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. In addition, AZA can demethylate FOXP3 intron 1 (FOXP3i1) leading to the generation of regulatory T cells (Tregs). Objective. We investigated the impact of AZA on xenogeneic graft-versus-host disease (xGVHD) in a humanized murine model of transplantation, and described the impact of the drug on human T cells in vivo. Methods. In order to induce xGVHD, human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (huPBMC) were administered intravenously in NOD-scid IL-2Rγnull (NSG) mice. Results. AZA successfully improved both survival (p<0.0001) and xGVHD scores (p<0.0001). Further, AZA significantly decreased human T-cell proliferation as well as INF-γ and TNF-α serum levels, and reduced the expression of GRANZYME B and PERFORIN 1 by cytotoxic T cells. In addition, AZA administration significantly increased the function, proliferation and frequency of Tregs through demethylation of FOXP3i1 and higher secretion of IL-2 by conventional T cells due to IL2 gene promoter site 1 demethylation. Interestingly, among AZA-treated mice surviving the acute phase of xGVHD, there was an inverse correlation between the presence of Tregs and signs of chronic GVHD. Finally, Tregs harvested from the spleen of AZA-treated mice were suppressive and stable over time since they persisted at high frequency in secondary transplant experiments. Conclusion. These findings emphasize a potential role for AZA as prevention or treatment of GVHD and other autoimmune diseases. [less ▲]

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See detailGalectin-1 is involved in osteoclast biology
Muller, Joséphine ULg; Binsfeld, Marilène ULg; DUBOIS, Sophie ULg et al

Poster (2016, February 28)

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See detailYellow nail syndrome after allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation in two patients with multiple myeloma
Grégoire, Céline ULg; GUIOT, Julien ULg; Vertenoeil, Gaëlle ULg et al

in Acta Clinica Belgica (2016), 6

Objective and Importance: Yellow nail syndrome (YNS) is a rare disorder of unknown aetiology characterized by the triad of yellow nails, lymphoedema and respiratory manifestations. About 200 cases have ... [more ▼]

Objective and Importance: Yellow nail syndrome (YNS) is a rare disorder of unknown aetiology characterized by the triad of yellow nails, lymphoedema and respiratory manifestations. About 200 cases have been reported, but a lot of patients probably elude proper diagnosis because of both variability of symptoms and ignorance of this syndrome by many physicians. The pathogenesis remains unclear, and could involve functional lymphatic abnormalities, microvasculopathy or lymphocyte deficiency, but none of these hypotheses seems fully satisfactory. Clinical Presentation: We report for the first time two cases of YNS associated with multiple myeloma relapsing after non-myeloablative haematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). In these two cases, onset or worsening of YNS symptoms followed graft-versus-host disease (GvHD) manifestations. Intervention: Corticosteroids given to treat GvHD also improved YNS manifestations. Conclusion: YNS after HCT might be a microvascular manifestation of endothelial GvHD and corticosteroids might be an effective treatment. [less ▲]

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See detailImmunomodulatory effects of rapamycin in Graft versus Host Disease
Ehx, Grégory ULg; Hannon, Muriel ULg; Humblet-Baron, Stéphanie et al

Poster (2016, January 29)

Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Several studies have shown that rapamycin (RAPA), an mTOR ... [more ▼]

Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Several studies have shown that rapamycin (RAPA), an mTOR inhibitor with immunosuppressive properties, may reduce GVHD severity and mortality, notably by favoring regulatory T cells (Tregs) proliferation in vivo and in vitro. However, few data have been reported about the global impact of this drug on the immune system in the context of GVHD. The present work investigates the mechanisms by which RAPA impacts GVHD both in a xenogeneic GVHD mouse model (NSG mice transplanted with human PBMC) and in patients receiving postgrafting immunosuppression with tacro + RAPA versus patients receiving tacro + MMF. In mice, our results show that RAPA injections significantly reduces xenogeneic GVHD lethality and severity. Flow cytometric analyses highlighted a strong reduction of human cells chimerism in mice together with higher CD4+/CD8+ T cells balance due to a lower proliferation of CD8+ T cells. In addition, the frequencies of naive -CD4+ and -CD8+ T cells were higher and the CD4+ T cells showed a reduced effector phenotype (CD45RO+CD27-). Tregs were positively affected as RAPA up-regulated their expression of Bcl-2 and Ki67 as well as their STAT5 phosphorylation level, leading to higher Treg frequency in treated mice. In patients, preliminary results show that RAPA significantly reduce CD8+ T cells count in agreement with mouse experiments. Altogether these data suggest that RAPA ameliorates GVHD by lowering cytotoxic and effector CD4+ T cells frequency as well as promoting Tregs. [less ▲]

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See detailAzacytidine and Decitabine prevent experimental sclerodermic chronic graft-versus-host disease
Fransolet, Gilles ULg; Ehx, Grégory ULg; SOMJA, Joan ULg et al

Poster (2016, January 29)

Introduction: Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains a major complication of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Following allo-transplantation, 60% of the patients experience ... [more ▼]

Introduction: Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) remains a major complication of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Following allo-transplantation, 60% of the patients experience chronic GVHD while approximately 15% of them develop a sclerodermic form of chronic GVHD characterized by multiple organ fibrosis and loss of skin elasticity. Regulatory T cells (Tregs) play a pivotal protective role in the pathogenesis of chronic GVHD by inhibiting alloreactive conventional T cells (Tconvs). Several studies have shown that hypomethylating agents such as Azacytidine (AZA) or Decitabine (DAC) can demethylate the master transcription factor of Treg (FoxP3), thus promoting Treg differentiation from Tconvs. This work investigates the impact of AZA and DAC in a murine model of sclerodermic chronic GVHD. Methods: Lethally irradiated (7 Gy) BALB/cJ recipient mice were injected with 107 bone marrow cells + 7.107splenocytes from B10.D2 donor mice to induce scl-cGVHD. Recipients were injected with 0.5 or 2 mg/kg of AZA or 0.75 mg/kg of DAC every 48h from day 10 to 30 following transplantation. GVHD was scored using a five criteria scale (weight loss, activity, fibrosis, hair loss and mice posture; 0-1-2 points/criteria). Mice were sacrificed at a score of 8/10. Results: Mice treated with AZA 0.5 mg/kg (n=14) or 2 mg/kg (n=17) or DAC 0.75 mg/kg (n=5) had lower clinical scores of GVHD compared to control (n=15). FACS analyses showed a higher proportion of Treg in the blood of AZA 0.5 or 2 mg/kg or DAC 0.75 mg/kg mice than in control at day 35. Results also showed a decreased number of Tconv and CD8 in AZA and DAC treated mice while proliferation of these cells expressing Ki67 was lower during AZA/DAC treatment but higher after discontinuation. Histological analyses showed less skin fibrosis in mice treated with 2 mg/kg of AZA. Finally, analyses of the blood components demonstrated that AZA mice were leuco- and lymphopenic as compared to control at day 21 and 35. Conclusion : AZA and DAC prevented sclerodermic GVHD in this murine model. [less ▲]

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See detailSalt but not glucocorticoïds enhances Th17 differentiation from naïve T cells in vitro
Delens, Loïc ULg; SERVAIS, Sophie ULg; Vrancken, Louise et al

Poster (2016, January 29)

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See detailMultipotent mesenchymal stromal cell therapy for steroid-refractory acute graft-versus-host disease after allogeneic stem cell transplantation
SERVAIS, Sophie ULg; GREGOIRE, Céline ULg; BARON, Frédéric ULg et al

in Belgian Journal of Hematology (2016), 7

Steroid-refractory acute graft-versus-host disease is a severe complication after allogeneic stem cell transplantation. So far, its treatment remains very challenging since the current therapies do not ... [more ▼]

Steroid-refractory acute graft-versus-host disease is a severe complication after allogeneic stem cell transplantation. So far, its treatment remains very challenging since the current therapies do not offer significant benefits. Among the most recent approaches, multipotent mesenchymal stromal cell-based therapy has attracted great interest over the past decade. Here, we briefly reviewed the current knowledges about the immunomodulatory properties of multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells as well as results of preclinical and clinical studies having assessed their efficacy to modulate steroid-refractory acute graft-versus-host disease. [less ▲]

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See detailEvalution et prise en charge de la surcharge en fer post-greffe recommandations de la SFGM-TC
JASPERS, Aurélie ULg; Bouhya, S; Belaiche, S et al

in Bulletin du Cancer (2016), 103

Assessment and management of post-transplant iron overload: Guidelines of the Francophone Society of Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapy (SFGM-TC) To harmonize clinical practice in hematopoietic ... [more ▼]

Assessment and management of post-transplant iron overload: Guidelines of the Francophone Society of Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapy (SFGM-TC) To harmonize clinical practice in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, the Francophone Society of Bone Marrow Transplantation and Cell Therapy (SFGM-TC) set up the sixth annual series of workshops which brought together practitioners from all member centers and took place in September 2015 in Lille. The main aim of this session was to describe the impact, evaluation and treatment of post-transplant iron overload. [less ▲]

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See detailClinical - scale expansion of mesenchymal stromal cells: a large banking experience
LECHANTEUR, Chantal ULg; BRIQUET, Alexandra ULg; GIET, Olivier ULg et al

in Journal of Translational Medicine (2016), 14

Background: Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) are largely investigated in clinical trials aiming to control inappropriate immune reactions (GVHD, Crohn’s disease, solid organ transplantation). As the ... [more ▼]

Background: Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) are largely investigated in clinical trials aiming to control inappropriate immune reactions (GVHD, Crohn’s disease, solid organ transplantation). As the percentage of MSC precursors in bone marrow is very low, these must be expanded in vitro to obtain therapeutic cell doses. We describe here the constitution of an allogeneic human third-party MSC bank from screened healthy volunteer donors in compliance with quality specifications and ISCT-release criteria and report follow-up of different aspects of this activity since 2007. Methods: 68 clinical-grade large-scale MSC cultures were completed and analyzed. The whole process was described, including volunteer donor screening, bone marrow collection, mononuclear cell isolation and expansion over 4 weeks, harvesting, cryopreservation, release, administration and quality controls of the cells (including microbiology, phenotype, and potency assays). Results: From 59 validated donors, 68 cultures were completed (mean of final yields: 886 × 106 cells/culture) and a total of 464 MSC aliquots have been produced and stored in liquid nitrogen (mean of 132.8 × 106 cells/bag). Each MSC batch underwent extensive testing to verify its conformity with EBMT and ISCT release criteria and was individually validated. As of June 1 2015, 314 bags have been released and infused to patients included in 6 different clinical protocols. All thawed MSC units satisfied to release criteria and no infusion-related toxicity was reported. Conclusion: In conclusion, despite low passage cultures, we have been able to create an allogeneic “off-the-shelf” MSC bank with a large number of frozen aliquots and report here an efficient clinical-grade MSC banking activity in place for more than 7 years. Our challenge now is to produce MSC in compliance with good manufacturing practices (GMP) as, in the meantime, MSC have become considered as advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMP). Another significant challenge remains the development of relevant potency assay. [less ▲]

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