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Advances in Hematology
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 1423493, 8 pages
Review Article

Haploidentical Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: Expanding the Horizon for Hematologic Disorders

1Aga Khan University, Karachi 74800, Pakistan
2Division of Hematologic Malignancies and Cellular Therapy, Duke Cancer Institute, Durham, NC 27710, USA

Received 10 November 2015; Accepted 10 January 2016

Academic Editor: Suparno Chakrabarti

Copyright © 2016 Mohammad Faizan Zahid and David Alan Rizzieri. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Despite the advent of targeted therapies and novel agents, allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation remains the only curative modality in the management of hematologic disorders. The necessity to find an HLA-matched related donor is a major obstacle that compromises the widespread application and development of this field. Matched unrelated donors and umbilical cord blood have emerged as alternative sources of donor stem cells; however, the cost of maintaining donor registries and cord blood banks is very high and even impractical in developing countries. Almost every patient has an HLA haploidentical relative in the family, meaning that haploidentical donors are potential sources of stem cells, especially in situations where cord blood or matched unrelated donors are not easily available. Due to the high rates of graft failure and graft-versus-host disease, haploidentical transplant was not considered a feasible option up until the late 20th century, when strategies such as “megadose stem cell infusions” and posttransplantation immunosuppression with cyclophosphamide showed the ability to overcome the HLA disparity barrier and significantly improve the rates of engraftment and reduce the incidence and severity of graft-versus-host disease. Newer technologies of graft manipulation have also yielded the same effects in addition to preserving the antileukemic cells in the donor graft.