Pretransplant Neutropenia Is Associated with Poor-Risk Cytogenetic Features and Increased Infection-Related Mortality in Patients with Myelodysplastic Syndromes

Bart L. Scott, J. Y. Park, H. Joachim Deeg, Kieren A. Marr, Michael Boeckh, Thomas R. Chauncey, Frederick R. Appelbaum, Rainer Storb, Barry E. Storer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A retrospective cohort analysis was performed to determine the impact of neutropenia on the outcome of hematopoietic cell transplantation (HSCT) in patients with myelodysplasia (MDS). Among 291 consecutive patients, 178 (61%) had absolute neutrophil counts (ANCs) <1500/μL and 113 (39%) had ANCs ≥1500/μL within 2 weeks before HSCT. Neutropenic patients more often had poor-risk karyotypes (34% versus 12%, P < .0001) and high-risk International Prognostic Scoring System scores (37% veresus 18%, P = .0006). After HSCT, the rate of infections caused by Gram-positive bacteria and invasive fungal infections was significantly increased among neutropenic patients (rate ratio [RR] 1.77, P = .02 and RR = 2.56, P = .03, respectively), whereas infections caused by Gram-negative bacteria were not affected (RR 1.33, P = .53). The hazards of nonrelapse mortality (NRM) (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.62 [1.1-2.4], P = .01), overall mortality (HR = 1.55 [1.1-2.1], P = 0.007), and infection-related mortality (HR = 2.22 [1.2-4.2], P = .01) were increased in neutropenic patients, whereas relapse, engraftment, and graft-versus-host-disease were not affected. After adjusting for cytogenetic risk and marrow myeloblast percentages, neutropenic patients remained at significant hazard for infection-related mortality (HR = 1.94 [1.0-3.8], P = .05), but not for overall mortality or NRM. We propose that intensified strategies to prevent infections should be implemented in MDS patients with preexisting neutropenia who undergo HSCT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)799-806
Number of pages8
JournalBiology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2008



  • MDS
  • Neutropenia
  • Stem cell transplant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Transplantation

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