The sole curative therapy for myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) is allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). Here this therapeutic modality is reviewed and critically evaluated in the context of the evidence. Specific criteria were used for searching the published literature and for grading the quality and strength of the evidence and the strength of the recommendations. A panel of MDS experts comprising transplantation and nontransplantation physicians developed consensus treatment recommendations. This review summarizes the standard MDS indications for HCT and addresses areas of controversy. Recent prospective trials have confirmed that allogeneic HCT confers survival benefits in patients with advanced or high-risk MDS compared with nontransplantation approaches, and the use of HCT is increasing in older patients with good performance status. However, patients with high-risk cytogenetic or molecular mutations remain at high risk for relapse. It is unknown whether administration of novel therapies before or after transplantation may decrease the risk of disease relapse in selected populations. Ongoing and future studies will investigate revised approaches to disease risk stratification, patient selection, and post-transplantation approaches to optimize allogeneic HCT outcomes for patients with MDS.
Keywords: Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation; Evidence-based review; Guideline; Myelodysplastic syndrome.
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