A prospective study on the natural history of patients with profound combined immunodeficiency: An interim analysis

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Abstract

Background:

Absent T-cell immunity resulting in life-threatening infections provides a clear rationale for hematopoetic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in patients with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID). Combined immunodeficiencies (CIDs) and “atypical” SCID show reduced, not absent T-cell immunity. If associated with infections or autoimmunity, they represent profound combined immunodeficiency (P-CID), for which outcome data are insufficient for unambiguous early transplant decisions.

Objectives:

We sought to compare natural histories of severity-matched patients with/without subsequent transplantation and to determine whether immunologic and/or clinical parameters may be predictive for outcome.

Methods:

In this prospective and retrospective observational study, we recruited nontransplanted patients with P-CID aged 1 to 16 years to compare natural histories of severity-matched patients with/without subsequent transplantation and to determine whether immunologic and/or clinical parameters may be predictive for outcome.

Results:

A total of 51 patients were recruited (median age, 9.6 years). Thirteen of 51 had a genetic diagnosis of “atypical” SCID and 14 of 51 of CID. About half of the patients had less than 10% naive T cells, reduced/absent T-cell proliferation, and at least 1 significant clinical event/year, demonstrating their profound immunodeficiency. Nineteen patients (37%) underwent transplantation within 1 year of enrolment, and 5 of 51 patients died. Analysis of the HSCT decisions revealed the anticipated heterogeneity, favoring an ongoing prospective matched-pair analysis of patients with similar disease severity with or without transplantation. Importantly, so far neither the genetic diagnosis nor basic measurements of T-cell immunity were good predictors of disease evolution.

Conclusions:

The P-CID study for the first time characterizes a group of patients with nontypical SCID T-cell deficiencies from a therapeutic perspective. Because genetic and basic T-cell parameters provide limited guidance, prospective data from this study will be a helpful resource for guiding the difficult HSCT decisions in patients with P-CID.

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