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Sclerodermatous GVHD after Allogeneic Bone Marrow Transplant: a Review

Nassau University Medical Center, East Meadow, NY 11554, USA

Chronic graft versus host disease (cGVHD) is the leading cause of non-relapse mortality after allogeneic hematopoietic bone marrow transplantation (HCT) for blood malignancy in patients who survive for more than two years. cGVHD can significantly affect quality of life and cause decreased mobility amongst other grave consequences such as end-organ damage, contributing to morbidity and mortality rates for recipients of HCT. Unlike acute GVHD (aGVHD), the chronic variant of graft versus host disease (GVHD) has complex immunopathology involving both humoral and cell immunity. It typically affects the integumentary system, though is known to also affect myofascial, mucocutaneous tissues as well as cause end organ damage ultimately resulting in death. Sclerodermatous cGVHD is a type of cGVHD characterized by involvement of the skin, subcutaneous tissue and fascia without evidence of disease in the viscera. Manifestations of this disease are often evocative of autoimmune disease, which is a self-directed inflammatory reaction to the innate and adaptive immune system in various tissues or multiple organ systems. This inflammatory reaction gives rise to autoantibodies as well as B-cell and T-cell mediated direct toxicity which can cause chronic inflammatory changes of tissues ultimately resulting in tissue scarring and end organ dysfunction. We aim to review the literature on this grave disease and elucidate aspects of the immunopathology of chronic sclerodermatous GVHD in hopes that it may lead to revelations inspiring novel therapies after its diagnosis or preventative measures before stem cell transplantation for malignancy.
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Keywords allogeneic bone marrow transplant; GVHD, graft versus host disease; sclerodermatous GVHD; chronic GVHD; HCT

Citation: Gagan Raju, Arezoo Haghshenas, Marianne Frieri, Prachi Anand. Sclerodermatous GVHD after Allogeneic Bone Marrow Transplant: a Review. AIMS Cell and Tissue Engineering, 2017, 1(1): 3-11. doi: 10.3934/celltissue.2017.1.3

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