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Study: Bone marrow and stem cell transplants result in similar survival rat

Category: Leukemia and WBC disorders

According to a recent study, long-term survival rates are similar for leukemia patients who underwent either bone marrow transplantations (BMT) or peripheral blood stem cell (PBSC) transplants.

Researchers from the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation followed 329 leukemia patients who received either a BMT or a PBSC transplant from a sibling donor between 1995 and 1999. After 10 years, overall survival was 49.1 percent for PBSC recipients and 56.5 for patients who received a bone marrow transplant.

However, the researchers also noted that the survival rate for patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia was 15 percent higher in the bone marrow transplant group. For patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), there were no significant differences in terms of long-term survival.

"This update comparing two important stem-cell sources did not find differences in survival after 10-year follow-up," the authors state. "However, subgroup analyses did reveal notable differences in survival in patients with acute leukemia between those who received allogeneic blood cells and those who received bone marrow."

They concluded that different patient groups may still benefit from bone marrow transplants.

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