How I treat adenovirus in hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients

Blood. 2010 Dec 16;116(25):5476-85. doi: 10.1182/blood-2010-04-259291. Epub 2010 Sep 13.


Adenovirus (AdV) infections are very common in the general pediatric population. The delayed clearance in young persons imposes a threat to immunocompromised patients after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), who can reactivate the virus, resulting in life-threatening disseminated disease. Although a definitive cure requires adequate immune reconstitution, 2 approaches appear to be feasible and effective to improve the outcomes of AdV infections. Strict monitoring with AdV quantitative polymerase chain reaction followed by preemptive treatment with low-dose (1 mg/kg) cidofovir 3 times a week, is effective in most cases to bridge the severely immunocompromised period shortly after HSCT, with acceptable toxicity rates. For centers who have the access, AdV-specific cytotoxic T cells can be the other important cornerstone of anti-AdV therapy with promising results so far. Methods to positively influence the reconstitution of the immune system after HSCT and optimizing new and currently available cellular immunotherapies will make HSCT safer against the threat of AdV infection/reactivation and associated disease.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenoviridae / drug effects*
  • Adenovirus Infections, Human / drug therapy*
  • Adenovirus Infections, Human / virology
  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Humans
  • Immunocompromised Host
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic


  • Antiviral Agents