Apr 29, 2018

Drug in the pipeline helps stem cell transplants too

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

An investigational drug in clinical trials for rheumatoid arthritis also prevents a common, life-threatening side effect of stem cell transplants, new research shows.

Studying mice, the researchers found the drug prevented what’s known as graft-versus-host disease, a debilitating, sometimes lethal condition that develops when transplanted stem cells attack the body’s own organs or tissues.

About half of patients receiving donor stem cells develop graft-versus-host disease, which can linger for months or years after their transplants. In some cases, patients die not from their cancer but from the complication itself. Current treatments are not effective.

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