Abstract

Mononuclear cell preparations from peripheral blood after mobilization with hematopoietic growth factors have been shown to induce accelerated neutrophil and platelet recovery as compared with that induced by autologous bone marrow transplantation after myeloablative chemotherapy. Because these mononuclear cell products contain many immunocompetent cells other than hematopoietic progenitors, these accessory cells might contribute to the rapid immunohematopoietic reconstitution. We have monitored the concentrations of soluble CD4 (sCD4), sCD8, and sCD25; the recovery of the lymphocyte subsets and of natural killer (NK) cells; and the endogenous levels of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF), interleukin-3 (IL-3), IL-6, and granulocyte-macrophage-CSF (GM-CSF) in 12 patients who underwent high- dose chemotherapy supported by blood stem cells that were obtained by mobilization with chemotherapy and GM-CSF. The concentrations of both G- CSF and IL-6 peaked at 7 days after reinfusion of stem cells, and this transient elevation preceded the increase in the white blood cell count by approximately 5 to 7 days. The levels of sCD4 and sCD8 increased to a maximum on day 21, and the time to peak levels coincided with the maximum increase in white blood cell count, absolute neutrophil count, or lymphocytes. The levels of sCD25 were found to be elevated from day 7 to day 21. Statistically, the increases in sCD4, sCD8, sCD25, G-CSF, and IL-6 were highly significant, whereas there were no significant changes in IL-3 and GM-CSF. A rapid recovery of the NK activity was found in all 8 of the patients who could be monitored for this assay. Therefore, our study suggests that recovery of CD4+ cells, CD8+ cells, and NK activity coincided with that of neutrophils, which is preceded by a marked, but transient, elevation of IL-6 and G-CSF.

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