CMV reactivation after allogeneic HCT and relapse risk: evidence for early protection in acute myeloid leukemia.Blood. 2013 Aug 15; 122(7):1316-24.Blood
The association between cytomegalovirus (CMV) reactivation and relapse was evaluated in a large cohort of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) (n = 761), acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) (n = 322), chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) (n = 646), lymphoma (n = 254), and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) (n = 371) who underwent allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) between 1995 and 2005. In multivariable models, CMV pp65 antigenemia was associated with a decreased risk of relapse by day 100 among patients with AML (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.56; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.3-0.9) but not in patients with ALL, lymphoma, CML, or MDS. The effect appeared to be independent of CMV viral load, acute graft-versus-host disease, or ganciclovir-associated neutropenia. At 1 year after HCT, early CMV reactivation was associated with reduced risk of relapse in all patients, but this did not reach significance for any disease subgroup. Furthermore, CMV reactivation was associated with increased nonrelapse mortality (HR = 1.31; 95% CI, 1.1-1.6) and no difference in overall mortality (HR = 1.05; 95% CI, 0.9-1.3). This report demonstrates a modest reduction in early relapse risk after HCT associated with CMV reactivation in a large cohort of patients without a benefit in overall survival.