Profiles of pro-inflammatory cytokines in allogenic stem cell transplantation with post-transplant cyclophosphamide

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Large number of studies was published about predictive value of cytokines for graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) after allogeneic stem cell transplantation. Recently, there has been a growing interest in GVHD prophylaxis with post-transplant cyclophosphamide (PTCy). Clinical data on the dynamics of proinflammatory cytokines with this prophylaxis is lacking. In this study, we have measured the levels of IL-17, IL-6, IL-8, IFN-γ and TNF-α in plasma on days −7, 0, +7, +14 and after engraftment in 20 patients with acute GVHD and 40 matched control patients with PTCy-based prophylaxis. Low levels of IL-8 (p = 0.04) on day +7 and IFN-γ (p = 0.03) after engraftment were associated with grade II-IV acute GVHD. The same pattern was observed for severe acute GVHD. Low IFN-γ after engraftment was also associated with increased non-relapse mortality (p = 0.014). No impact of cytokine levels on overall survival and relapse incidence was observed (p > 0.05). In conclusion, the dynamics of IL-8 and IFN-γ in GVHD patients after PTCy was different from previously reported after conventional prophylaxis.

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