Complement fragment 3a priming of umbilical cord blood progenitors: Safety profile

Claudio G. Brunstein, David H. McKenna, Todd E. DeFor, Darin Sumstad, Philip Paul, Daniel J. Weisdorf, Mariusz Ratajczak, Mary J. Laughlin, John E. Wagner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Preclinical data showed that priming CD34+ hematopoietic progenitor cells with complement fragment 3a (C3a) improved homing and engraftment. Thus, we hypothesized that priming of umbilical cord blood (UCB) hematopoietic progenitors with C3a would facilitate homing and could potentially be used to address the need for improved engraftment after UCB transplantation. We primed 1 of 2 UCB units for double UCB transplantation after nonmyeloablative conditioning. This design provided adequate safety and the potential to observe skewed long-term chimerism in favor of the C3a-primed unit as a surrogate measure of efficacy. C3a priming of 1 UCB unit did not result in infusional toxicity. Increased grades 1 to 3 hypertension were the only infusional adverse events observed in 9 (30%) patients. We observed no activation of inflammatory or coagulation pathways downstream of C3a. As tested, C3a priming did not impair engraftment, but did not skew chimerism toward the treated unit. As compared with historical controls, mortality and survival were not adversely affected. Thus, before any additional clinical studies, C3a priming to promote engraftment will require further preclinical optimization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1474-1479
Number of pages6
JournalBiology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Financial disclosure: This work was supported in part by grants from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institutes 1RC1HL099447-01 (C.G.B., D.H.M., M.R., M.J.L., and J.E.W.), and Production Assistance for Cellular Therapies (PACT) program under contract No. HHSN268201000008C (C.G.B., D.H.M, J.E.W), and American Society of Blood and Marrow Transplantation Young Investigator Award (C.G.B.).


  • Chimerism
  • Engraftment
  • Priming
  • Umbilical cord blood


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