Hematopoietic cell transplantation with cord blood for cure of HIV infections.


Hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) using CCR5-Δ32/Δ32 stem cells from an adult donor has resulted in the only known cure of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. However, it is not feasible to repeat this procedure except rarely because of the low incidence of the CCR5-Δ32 allele, the availability of only a small number of potential donors for most patients, and the need for a very close human leukocyte antigen (HLA) match between adult donors and recipients. In contrast, cord blood (CB) transplantations require significantly less stringent HLA matching. Therefore, our hypothesis is that cure of HIV infections by HCT can be accomplished much more readily using umbilical CB stem cells obtained from a modestly sized inventory of cryopreserved CCR5-Δ32/Δ32 CB units. To test this hypothesis, we developed a screening program for CB units and are developing an inventory of CCR5-Δ32/Δ32 cryopreserved units available for HCT. Three hundred such units are projected to provide for white pediatric patients a 73.6% probability of finding an adequately HLA matched unit with a cell dose of ≥2.5 × 10(7) total nucleated cells (TNCs)/kg and a 27.9% probability for white adults. With a cell dose of ≥1 × 10(7) TNCs/kg, the corresponding projected probabilities are 85.6% and 82.1%. The projected probabilities are lower for ethnic minorities. Impetus for using CB HCT was provided by a transplantation of an adult with acute myelogenous leukemia who was not HIV infected. The HCT was performed with a CCR5-Δ32/Δ32 CB unit, and posttransplantation in vitro studies indicated that the patient's peripheral blood mononuclear cells were resistant to HIV infection.





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Publication Info

Petz, Lawrence D, Istvan Redei, Yvonne Bryson, Donna Regan, Joanne Kurtzberg, Elizabeth Shpall, Jonathan Gutman, Sergio Querol, et al. (2013). Hematopoietic cell transplantation with cord blood for cure of HIV infections. Biology of blood and marrow transplantation : journal of the American Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation, 19(3). pp. 393–397. 10.1016/j.bbmt.2012.10.017 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/24690.

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Joanne Kurtzberg

Jerome S. Harris Distinguished Professor of Pediatrics

Dr. Kurtzberg is an internationally renowned expert in pediatric hematology/oncology, pediatric blood and marrow transplantation, umbilical cord blood banking and transplantation, and novel applications of cord blood and birthing tissues in the emerging fields of cellular therapies and regenerative medicine.   Dr. Kurtzberg serves as the Director of the Marcus Center for Cellular Cures (MC3), Director of the Pediatric Transplant and Cellular Therapy Program, Director of the Carolinas Cord Blood Bank, and Co-Director of the Stem Cell Transplant Laboratory at Duke University.  The Carolinas Cord Blood Bank is an FDA licensed public cord blood bank distributing unrelated cord blood units for donors for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) through the CW Bill Young Cell Transplantation Program.  The Robertson GMP Cell Manufacturing Laboratory supports manufacturing of RETHYMIC (BLA, Enzyvant, 2021), allogeneic cord tissue derived and bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs), and DUOC, a microglial/macrophage cell derived from cord blood.

Dr. Kurtzberg’s research in MC3 focuses on translational studies from bench to bedside, seeking to develop transformative clinical therapies using cells, tissues, molecules, genes, and biomaterials to treat diseases and injuries that currently lack effective treatments. Recent areas of investigation in MC3 include clinical trials investigating the safety and efficacy of autologous and allogeneic cord blood in children with neonatal brain injury – hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), cerebral palsy (CP), and autism. Clinical trials testing allogeneic cord blood are also being conducted in adults with acute ischemic stroke. Clinical trials optimizing manufacturing and testing the safety and efficacy of cord tissue MSCs in children with autism, CP and HIE and adults with COVID-lung disease are underway. DUOC, given intrathecally, is under study in children with leukodystrophies and adults with primary progressive multiple sclerosis.

In the past, Dr. Kurtzberg has developed novel chemotherapeutic drugs for acute leukemias, assays enumerating ALDH bright cells to predict cord blood unit potency, methods of cord blood expansion, potency assays for targeted cell and tissue based therapies. Dr. Kurtzberg currently holds several INDs for investigational clinical trials from the FDA.  She has also trained numerous medical students, residents, clinical and post-doctoral fellows over the course of her career.

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