Chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD) is a major barrier to successful allogeneic stem cell transplantation. Pentostatin has been used to treat cGVHD in a small series of pediatric patients. The authors report the results of the first five pediatric patients receiving pentostatin for refractory cGVHD at Johns Hopkins Hospital. In this early experience, the authors saw considerable symptom response in their patients. Every patient in this series demonstrated a significant improvement in skin and oral symptoms. An increased incidence of infection secondary to pentostatin was not observed. No patient was permanently discontinued from pentostatin subsequent to side effects. If these promising results continue, a trial of pentostatin as a first-line therapy for cGVHD should be considered to potentially reduce our dependence on high-dose steroids for its treatment.
- Bone marrow transplant
- Graft-versus-host disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health