Impact of HLA disparity on the risk of overall mortality in patients with grade II-IV acute GVHD on behalf of the HLA Working Group of Japan Society for Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation

Bone Marrow Transplant. 2021 Dec;56(12):2990-2996. doi: 10.1038/s41409-021-01443-2. Epub 2021 Sep 3.


Acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality after allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). Stem cell source or HLA disparity may exert a significant impact on the overall survival (OS) after the development of aGVHD. In order to clarify this point, we performed a retrospective analysis using a database of the Japan Society for HCT. We analyzed the clinical outcomes of 10,035 patients who developed grade II-IV aGVHD. The median age of the patients was 48 years. The probability of 2-year OS after the onset of grade II-IV aGVHD in the study cohort was 54.1%. The multivariate analysis showed that the HLA ≥2-loci mismatched related donor and HLA 1-locus mismatched unrelated donor were significantly associated with an inferior OS after grade II-IV aGVHD. In a subgroup analysis, peripheral blood stem cells and HLA disparity were associated with an inferior OS in patients who received related or unrelated HCT. Thus, the clinical outcome after grade II-IV aGVHD significantly varied as per the combination of the presence of HLA disparity and stem cell source. Further research using other databases is necessary to confirm our findings.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Graft vs Host Disease*
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Unrelated Donors