Between September 1987 and December 1994, 80 patients with multiple myeloma (MM) received high-dose busulfan and cyclophosphamide without (n = 57) or with modified total body irradiation (n = 23) followed by marrow from allogeneic donors. At transplant, 71% of the patients had disease that was refractory to chemotherapy. Thirty-five patients died of transplant-related causes within 100 days and 11 deaths occurred later. The actuarial probabilities of survival and progression-free survival were .24 +/- 0.17 and .20 +/- 0.10 at 4.5 years. Complete remissions were obtained in 36% of patients who had actuarial probabilities of survival and event-free survival of .50 +/- 0.21 and .43 +/- 0.17 at 4.5 years. In a multivariate analysis, adverse risk factors for outcome endpoints included: transplantation greater than 1 year from diagnosis; beta-2 microglobulin > 2.5 at transplant; female patients transplanted from male donors; patients who had received greater than eight cycles of chemotherapy before transplant and Durie stage 3 disease at the time of transplant. These results indicate that allografting for patients with MM can result in long-term disease-free survival for a minority of patients. Efforts to reduce transplant-related mortality should focus on earlier transplantation, less toxic treatment regimens, better supportive care, and improved prevention and treatment of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD).

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