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Prognostic importance of histological and immunopathological assessment of skin and rectal biopsies in patients with GVHD

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Andrew Pearson, Dr Peter Hamilton, Professor Stephen Proctor, Professor Archibald Malcolm


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Skin and rectal biopsies from patients with GVHD were examined histologically and immunopathologically before and after treatment for the disease. The patients were divided into two groups: those showing a good response to treatment and those showing a poor or no response. The aims of the study were to assess the possibility of predicting the response to treatment and to compare good and poor responders after treatment. The results show that there are no features on either skin or rectal biopsy that could identify those patients with early GVHD who would respond to treatment. Following treatment with steroids there was no change histologically in the grading of the skin biopsy whereas the rectal biopsy showed improvement in six of nine good responders and no improvement in the poor responders. There was an increase in infiltrating lymphocytes in both the skin and rectum of patients showing a poor response and this is most likely due to the ongoing immune reaction. The pre-treatment biopsy did not show any features that would predict this development and was therefore of no prognostic value. However, examination of skin and rectal biopsies may aid in determining whether patients are responding to the treatment given for GVHD.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Sviland, L., Pearson, A. D. J., Green, M. A., Eastham, E. J., Hamilton, P. J., Proctor, S. J., Malcolm, A. J.

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Bone Marrow Transplantation

Year: 1993

Volume: 11

Issue: 3

Pages: 215-218

Print publication date: 01/03/1993

ISSN (print): 0268-3369

ISSN (electronic): 1476-5365

PubMed id: 8467285