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Protocol Details

Pilot Study of Allogeneic/Syngeneic Blood Stem Cell Transplantation in Patients with High-Risk and Recurrent Pediatric Sarcomas

This study is NOT currently recruiting participants.

Summary | Eligibility | Citations | Contacts




Sponsoring Institute

National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Recruitment Detail

Type: Completed Study; data analyses ongoing
Gender: Male & Female
Min Age: 4
Max Age: 99

Referral Letter Required


Population Exclusion(s)


Special Instructions

Currently Not Provided


Ewing's Sarcoma;
Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor

Recruitment Keyword(s)

Ewing Sarcoma;


Ewing's Sarcoma;
Desmopolastic Small Round Cell Tumor

Investigational Drug(s)


Investigational Device(s)



Drug: F-18 Fluorodeoxyglucose
Drug: Filgrastim Procedure: Peripheral Blood Stem Cell donation
Biological/Vaccine: therapeutic allogeneic lymphocytes
Drug: cyclophosphamide
Drug: cyclosporine
Drug: doxorubicin hydrochloride
Drug: etoposide
Drug: fludarabine phosphate
Drug: melphalan
Drug: prednisone
Drug: sirolimus
Drug: tacrolimus
Drug: vincristine sulfate
Procedure/Surgery: peripheral blood stem cell transplantation

Supporting Site

National Cancer Institute

This study will examine the safety and effectiveness of stem cell transplantation for treating patients with sarcomas (tumors of the bone, nerves, or soft tissue). Stem cells are immature cells in the bone marrow and blood stream that develop into blood cells. Stem cells transplanted from a healthy donor travel to the patient's bone marrow and begin producing normal cells. In patients with certain cancers, such as leukemia and lymphoma, the donor's immune cells attack the patient's cancer cells in what is called a "graft-versus-tumor" effect, contributing to cure of the disease. This study will determine whether this treatment can be used successfully to treat patients with sarcomas.

Patients between 4 and 35 years of age with a sarcoma that has spread from the primary site or cannot be removed surgically, and for whom effective treatment is not available, may be eligible for this study. Candidates must have been diagnosed by the age of 30 at the time of enrollment. They must have a matched donor (usually a sibling). Participants undergo the following procedures:

Donors: Stem cells are collected from the donor. To do this, the hormone G-CSF is injected under the skin for several days to move stem cells out of the bone marrow into the bloodstream. Then, the cells are collected by apheresis. In this procedure the blood is drawn through a needle placed in one arm and pumped into a machine where the stem cells are separated out and removed. The rest of the blood is returned to the donor through a needle in the other arm.

Patients: For patients who do not already have a central venous catheter (plastic tube), one is placed into a major vein. This tube can stay in the body the entire treatment period for giving medications, transfusing blood, , withdrawing blood samples, and delivering the donated stem cells. Before the transplant procedure, patients receive from one to three cycles of "induction" chemotherapy, with each cycle consisting of 5 days of fludarabine, cyclophosphamide, etoposide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone followed by at least a 17-day rest period. All the drugs are infused through the catheter except prednisone, which is taken by mouth. After the induction therapy, the patient is admitted to the hospital for 5 days of chemotherapy with high doses of cyclophosphamide, melphalan, and fludarabine. Two days later, the stem cells are infused. The anticipated hospital stay is about 3 weeks, but may be longer if complications arise. Patients are discharged when their white cell count is near normal, they have no fever or infection, they can take sufficient food and fluids by mouth, and they have no signs of serious graft-versus-host disease (GVHD)-a condition in which the donor's cells "see" the patient's cells as foreign and mount an immune response against them.

After hospital discharge, patients are followed in the clinic at least once or twice weekly for a medical history, physical exam, and blood tests for 100 days. They receive medications to prevent infection and GVHD and, if needed, blood transfusions. If GVHD has not developed by about 120 days post transplant, patients receive additional white cells to boost the immune response. After 100 days, follow-up visits may be less frequent. Follow-up continues for at least 5 years. During the course of the study, patients undergo repeated medical evaluations, including blood tests and radiology studies, to check on the cancer and on any treatment side effects. On four occasions, white blood cells may be collected through apheresis to see if immune responses can be generated against the sarcomas treated in this study. Positron emission tomography (PET) scans may be done on five occasions. This test uses a radioactive material to produce images useful in detecting primary tumors and cancer that has spread.

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The following diagnoses will be considered:

a) Patients with Ewing s sarcoma family of tumors, or alveolar

rhabdomyosarcoma in one of the following categories:

--Patients who present at the time of initial diagnosis with bone or bone marrow metastases may be enrolled after completion of standard front-line therapy. Standard front line therapy for alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma should include vincristine and cyclophosphamide, plus actinomycin D and/or adriamycin. For patients with Ewing s sarcoma, standard front line therapy should include vincristine, cyclophosphamide, adriamycin, ifosfamide and etoposide.

--Patients with recurrence of tumor at any site less than one year after completing standard front-line therapy or with a second or subsequent recurrence at any time after completing standard front-line therapy.

--Patients with progression or persistence of disease while receiving standard front-line chemotherapy who cannot achieve a CR with local treatment modalities.

b) The following patients with desmoplastic small round cell tumor are eligible after receiving front line standard therapy, which is defined as a regimen containing at least vincristine, cyclophosphamide, and adriamycin:

--unresectable disease

--metastatic tumor (abdominal and extra-abdominal disease)

--progressive or persistent while receiving standard therapy

--recurrence within one year of completing therapy

-Patients without evaluable tumor at the time of enrollment are eligible

-Patients who have previously received high-dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell rescue are eligible for this trial.

-Patient age 5-35 at enrollment.

-Availability of a 5 or 6 antigen HLA-matched first-degree relative donor (single HLA-A or B mismatch allowed). Genotypically identical twins may serve as stem cell donors. Genotypic identity must be confirmed by RFLP analysis.

-ECOG performance status of 0, 1, or 2 or, for children less than or equal 10 years of age, Lansky greater than or equal 60

-Cardiac function: Left ventricular ejection fraction greater than or equal to 45% by MUGA, fractional shortening greater than or equal 28% by ECHO or left ventricular ejection fraction greater than or equal 55% by ECHO.

-Pulmonary function: DLCO greater than or equal to 50% of the expected value corrected for alveolar volume.

-Renal function: Age-adjusted normal serum creatinine according to the following table or a creatinine clearance greater than or equal to 60 ml/min/1.73 m2. Age (years) Maximum serum creatinine (mg/dl) less than or equal to 5 0.8 greater than 5, less than or equal to 10 1.0 greater than 10, less than or equal to15 1.2, greater than 15 1.5

-Liver function: Serum total bilirubin less than 2 mg/dl, serum AST and ALT less than or equal to 2.5 times upper limit of normal.

-Marrow function: ANC must be greater than 750/mm3 (unless due to underlying disease in which case there is no grade restriction), platelet count must be greater than or equal to 75,000/mm3 (not achieved by transfusion) unless due to underlying disease in which case there is no grade restriction). Lymphopenia, CD4 lymphopenia, leukopenia, and anemia will not render patients ineligible.

-Ability to give informed consent. For patients less than18 years of age their legal guardian must give informed consent. Pediatric patients will be included in age appropriate discussion in order to obtain verbal assent.

-Durable power of attorney form completed (patients greater than or equal to18 years of age only).


-Weight greater than or equal 15 kilograms.

-First degree relative with genotypic identity at 5 or 6 HLA loci (single HLAA or B locus mismatch allowed). Genotypically identical twins may serve as stem cell donors. Genotypic identity must be confirmed by RFLP analysis.

-For donors less than18 years of age, he/she must be the oldest suitable donor, their legal guardian must give informed consent, the donor must give verbal assent, and he/she must be cleared by social work and a mental health specialist to participate.

-For donors greater than or equal to 18 years of age, ability to give informed consent.

-Adequate peripheral venous access for apheresis or consent to use a temporary central venous catheter for apheresis.

-Donor selection criteria will be in accordance with NIH/CC Department of Transfusion Medicine Standards.


-Uncontrolled fungal infection.

-History of untreated CNS tumor involvement. Extradural masses which have not invaded the brain parenchyma (as is commonly observed in Ewing s sarcoma family of tumors) or parameningeal tumors (as is commonly observed in rhabdomyosarcoma) without evidence for leptomeningeal spread will not render the patient ineligible. Patients with previous CNS tumor involvement that has been treated and has been stable for at least 6 weeks are eligible.

-Lactating or pregnant females.

-HIV positive (due to unacceptable risk following allogeneic transplantation).

-Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) positive or hepatitis C antibody positive with elevated liver transaminases. All patients with chronic active hepatitis (including those on treatment) are ineligible.

-High risk of inability to comply with transplant protocol, or inability to give appropriate informed consent in the estimation of the PI, social work, or the stem cell transplant team.

-Fanconi Anemia


-History of medical illness which poses a risk to donation in the estimation of the PI or the Department of Transfusion Medicine physician including, but not limited to stroke, hypertension that is not controlled with medication, or heart disease. Individuals with symptomatic angina or a history of coronary bypass grafting or angioplasty will not be eligible.

-History of congenital hematologic, immunologic, oncologic or metabolic disorder, which poses a prohibitive risk to the recipient in the estimation of the PI.

-Anemia (Hb less than 11 gm/dl) or thrombocytopenia (platelets less than 100,000/micro l).

-Lactating or pregnant females. Donors of childbearing potential must use an effective method of contraception during the time they are receiving G-CSF. The effects of cytokine administration on a fetus are unknown and may be potentially harmful. The effects upon breast milk are also unknown and may potentially be harmful to the infant.

-HIV-positive, hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) positive or hepatitis C antibody positive. Donors are providing an allogeneic blood product and there is the potential risk of transmitting these viral illnesses to the recipient.

-High risk of inability to comply with transplant protocol.

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Dunst J, Sauer R, Burgers JM, Hawliczek R, Kurten R, Winkelmann W, Salzer-Kuntschik M, Muschenich M, Jurgens H. Radiation therapy as local treatment in Ewing's sarcoma. Results of the Cooperative Ewing's Sarcoma Studies CESS 81 and CESS 86. Cancer. 1991 Jun 1;67(11):2818-25.

Demeocq F, Oberlin O, Benz-Lemoine E, Boilletot A, Gentet JC, Zucker JM, Behar C, Poutard P, Olive D, Brunat-Mentigny M, et al. Initial chemotherapy including ifosfamide in the management of Ewing's sarcoma: preliminary results. A protocol of the French Pediatric Oncology Society (SFOP). Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 1989;24 Suppl 1:S45-7.

Burdach S, Jurgens H, Peters C, Nurnberger W, Mauz-Korholz C, Korholz D,Paulussen M, Pape H, Dilloo D, Koscielniak E, et al. Myeloablative radiochemotherapy and hematopoietic stem-cell rescue in poor-prognosis Ewing's sarcoma. J Clin Oncol. 1993 Aug;11(8):1482-8.

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Principal Investigator

Referral Contact

For more information:

Crystal L. Mackall, M.D.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
BG 10-CRC RM 1-3750
(301) 402-5940

Cindy P. Delbrook, R.N.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
National Institutes of Health
Building 10
Room 1-3750
10 Center Drive
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
(301) 496-9454

NCI Referral Office
National Institute of Health Clinical Center (CC), 9000 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, United States: NCI Clinical Trials Referral Office

Clinical Trials Number:


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