Fertility Potential and Gonadal Function in Survivors of Reduced-Intensity Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation.

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DOI: 10.1016/j.jtct.2024.02.002


The use of reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) regimens has increased in an effort to minimize hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HCT) end-organ toxicity, including gonadal toxicity. We aimed to describe the incidence of fertility potential and gonadal function impairment in adolescent and young adult survivors of HCT and to identify risk factors (including conditioning intensity) for impairment. We performed a multi-institutional, international retrospective cohort study of patients age 10 to 40 years who underwent first allogeneic HCT before December 1, 2019, and who were alive, in remission, and available for follow-up at 1 to 2 years post-HCT. For females, an AMH level of ≥.5 ng/mL defined preserved fertility potential; an AMH level of ≥.03 ng/mL was considered detectable. Gonadal failure was defined for females as an elevated follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) level >30 mIU/mL with an estradiol (E2) level/mL or current use of hormone replacement therapy (regardless of specific indication or intent). For males, gonadal failure was defined as an FSH level >10.4 mIU/mL or current use of hormone replacement therapy. A total of 326 patients (147 females) were available for analysis from 17 programs (13 pediatric, 4 adult). At 1 to 2 years post-HCT, 114 females (77.6%) had available FSH and E2 levels and 71 (48.3%) had available AMH levels. FSH levels were reported for 125 males (69.8%). Nearly all female HCT recipients had very low levels of AMH. One of 45 (2.2%) recipients of myeloablative conditioning (MAC) and four of 26 (15.4%) recipients of reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) (P = .06) had an AMH ≥.5 ng/m, and 8 of 45 MAC recipients (17.8%) and 12 of 26 RIC recipients (46.2%) (P = .015) had a detectable AMH level. Total body irradiation (TBI) dose and cyclophosphamide equivalent dose (CED) were not associated with detectable AMH. The incidence of female gonadal hormone failure was 55.3%. In univariate analysis, older age at HCT was associated with greater likelihood of gonadal failure (median age, 17.6 versus 13.9; P < .0001), whereas conditioning intensity (RIC versus MAC), TBI, chronic graft-versus-host disease requiring systemic therapy, and CED were not significantly associated with gonadal function. In multivariable analysis, age remained statistically significant (odds ratio [OR]. 1.11; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.03 to 1.22) for each year increase; P = .012), Forty-four percent of the males had gonadal failure. In univariate analysis, older age (median, 16.2 years versus 14.4 years; P = .0005) and TBI dose (P = .002) were both associated with gonadal failure, whereas conditioning intensity (RIC versus MAC; P = .06) and CED (P = .07) were not statistically significant. In multivariable analysis, age (OR, 1.16; 95% CI, 1.06-1.27 for each year increase; P = .0016) and TBI ≥600 cGy (OR, 6.23; 95% CI, 2.21 to 19.15; P = .0008) remained significantly associated with gonadal failure. Our data indicate that RIC does not significantly mitigate the risk for gonadal failure in females or males. Age at HCT and (specifically in males) TBI use seem to be independent predictors of post-transplantation gonadal function and fertility status. All patients should receive pre-HCT infertility counseling and be offered appropriate fertility preservation options and be screened post-HCT for gonadal failure.

Journal Title

Transplant Cell Ther





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MeSH Keywords

Humans; Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation; Female; Male; Adult; Adolescent; Child; Retrospective Studies; Transplantation Conditioning; Young Adult; Fertility; Survivors; Anti-Mullerian Hormone; Gonads; Risk Factors


AYA; Fertility; Gonadal; HCT; Oncofertility; RIC


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