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Bone Marrow Research
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 897215, 11 pages
Review Article

Controversies and Recent Advances in Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation for Follicular Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

1Myeloma and Lymphoma Service, Osborn Hematopoietic Malignancy and Transplantation Program, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26506, USA
2Blood and Marrow Transplantation, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL 33612, USA
3Division of Hematology and Oncology, West Virginia University, P.O. Box 9162, 1 Medical Center Drive, Morgantown, WV 26506, USA

Received 30 July 2012; Revised 19 September 2012; Accepted 19 September 2012

Academic Editor: Joseph H. Antin

Copyright © 2012 Abraham S. Kanate et al. 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.


Commonly designated as an indolent non-Hodgkin lymphoma, follicular lymphoma (FL) presents with striking pathobiological and clinical heterogeneity. Initial management strategies for FL have evolved to involve combination chemoimmunotherapy and/or radio-immunoconjugates. Unfortunately even with the best available nontransplant treatment, which nowadays results in higher frequency of response, FL remains incurable. Although considered a feasible therapeutic option, the use of hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) remains controversial. The appropriate timing, graft source, and intensity of HCT conditioning regimens in FL are often matters of debate. Herein we review the available published data pertaining to the use of autologous or allogeneic HCT in patients with FL across different stages of the disease, discuss major recent advances in the field, and highlight avenues for future research. The current literature does not support a role of HCT for FL in first remission, but in the relapsed setting autologous HCT remains appropriate for patients with early chemosensitive relapses, while allogeneic transplantation remains the sole curative modality for this disease, in relatively younger patients without significant comorbidities.