Feasibility and toxicity of hematopoietic stem cell transplant in multiple sclerosis

Document Type : Review Article


School of Healthy Aging, Medical Aesthetics and Regenerative Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Science, UCSI University, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


Multiple sclerosis is a debilitating disease of the central nervous system. It affects people of all ages but is more prevalent among 20-40 year olds. Patients with MS can be presented with potentially any neurological symptom depending on the location of the lesion. A quarter of patients with MS suffer from bilateral lower limb spasticity among other symptoms. These devastating effects can be detrimental to the patient's quality of life. Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) have been used as a treatment for MS over the past 2 decades but their safety and efficacy has are undetermined. The objective of this study is to evaluate the feasibility and toxicity of autologous HSCs transplantation in MS. A literature search was done from 1997 to 2016 using different keywords. A total of 9 articles, which met the inclusion and exclusion criteria, were included in this review. The type of conditioning regimen and technique of stem cell mobilization are summarized and compared in this study. All studies reported high-dose immunosuppressive therapy with autologous HSCs transplantation being an effective treatment option for severe cases of multiple sclerosis. Fever, sepsis, and immunosuppression side effects were the most observed adverse effects that were reported in the selected studies. HSCs is a feasible treatment for patients with MS; nevertheless the safety is still a concern due to chemo toxicity.


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