HLA disparity is traditionally measured at the antigen or allele level, and its impact on haploidentical hematopoietic cell transplantation (haplo-HCT) with high-dose posttransplant cyclophosphamide (PTCy) is unclear. To the best of our knowledge, the relationship between HLA eplet-derived epitope mismatch (EM) and clinical outcome has not been examined in haplo-HCT. We retrospectively analyzed 148 patients who received a peripheral blood, T-cell-replete haplo-HCT with PTCy at a single center. HLA EM was quantified using an HLAMatchmaker-based method and was stratified by class and vector. The primary outcome was incidence of relapse. The total number of mismatched epitopes (MEs) per patient-donor pair in our patient population ranged from 0 to 51 (median, 24) in the graft-versus-host (GVH) direction and 0 to 47 (median, 24) in the host-versus-graft (HVG) direction. Higher HLA class II EM in the GVH direction was associated with a significantly reduced risk of relapse (adjusted hazard ratio [HR], 0.952 per ME; P 5 .002) and improved relapse-free survival (adjusted HR, 0.974 per ME; P 5 .020). Higher HLA class II EM in the HVG direction was associated with longer time to neutrophil (adjusted HR, 0.974 per ME; P 5 .013) and platelet (adjusted HR, 0.961 per ME; P 5 .001) engraftment. In peripheral blood haplo-HCT patients, increased HLA EM was associated with a protective effect on the risk of relapse in the GVH direction but a negative effect on time to count recovery in the HVG direction. HLA EM based on the HLA Matchmaker represents a novel strategy to predict clinical outcome in haplo-HCT.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3590-3601
Number of pages12
JournalBlood Advances
Issue number24
StatePublished - Dec 26 2018


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