B-cell recovery following rituximab-based therapy is associated with perturbations in stromal derived factor-1 and granulocyte homeostasis

Kieron Dunleavy, Frances Hakim, Hyun Kyung Kim, John E. Janik, Nicole Grant, Takayuki Nakayama, Therese White, George Wright, Larry Kwak, Ronald Gress, Giovanna Tosato, Wyndham H. Wilson

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76 Scopus citations


The occurrence of delayed neutropenia following rituximab is poorly defined and of unknown cause. We hypothesized it may be related to perturbations of stromal derived factor-1 (SDF-1) and granulocyte homeostasis. Late-onset neutropenia (LON) was investigated in 130 patients with untreated aggressive B-cell lymphoma receiving DA-EPOCH (dose-adjusted etoposide, prednisone, Oncovin [vincristine], cyclophosphamide, and hydroxydaunorubicin) chemotherapy with or without rituximab. All patients were in remission and had no known causes for neutropenia. LON occurred in 6 (8%) of 76 patients receiving rituximab and 0 of 54 patients not receiving rituximab (P = .04). The median onset was 175 days (range, 77-204 days) after treatment with a median duration of 14 days (range, 11-16 days). In a subset of 24 patients, a significant correlation was found between rapid B-cell recovery and granulocyte decline over the 6-month recovery period (R = -0.53; P = .04). Rapid B-cell recovery directly correlated with prerecovery SDF-1 levels (R = 0.65; P = .015) and SDF-1 decline (R = -0.67; P = .013) after recovery. Our results suggest that early B-cell lymphopoiesis is important for B-cell recovery following rituximab, and that perturbation of SDF-1 during B-cell recovery retards neutrophil egress from the bone marrow. These findings illustrate the dual role of SDF-1 in human B-cell and granulocyte homeostasis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)795-802
Number of pages8
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2005


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology
  • Hematology
  • Cell Biology

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