Hurler syndrome (HS) is an autosomal recessive, inherited metabolic storage disorder due to deficiency of lysosomal alpha-L-iduronidase (IDU) enzyme activity. Untreated patients develop progressive mental retardation and multisystem morbidity with a median life expectancy of 5 years. Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) can achieve stabilization and even improvement of intellect, with long-term survival. However, children with HS have an increased incidence of graft failure, usually with concomitant autologous marrow reconstitution. Between 1983 and 2000, 71 Hurler children underwent HCT at the University of Minnesota. Of these 71, 19 (27%) experienced graft failure. We report HCT outcomes in all 11 Hurler patients receiving a second HCT at the University of Minnesota. Median age at second HCT was 25 months (range, 16 to 45 months); median time from first HCT was 8 months (range, 4 to 18.5 months). The conditioning regimen consisted of cyclophosphamide/TBI/ATG (n = 8) or busulfan/cyclophosphamide/ATG (n=3). The source of bone marrow was an unrelated donor in six, matched sibling in four, and mismatched related in one. Five of the 11 grafts were T cell depleted prior to infusion. Overall, 10 of 11 patients showed donor-derived engraftment, of whom three developed grade 3 to 4 acute GVHD. Five of 11 patients are surviving a median of 25 months (range, 2 months to 12 years) with an overall actuarial survival of 50% (95% CI, 27% to 93%) at 4 years. All five show sustained donor engraftment with normalization of IDU activity levels. Three of five evaluable patients demonstrated stabilization of neuro-psychological function after second HCT. Currently, allogeneic donor-derived hematopoiesis provides the only chance for long-term survival and improved quality of life in Hurler patients. While graft failure in Hurler patients requires further investigation, a timely second HCT can be well-tolerated and beneficial.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The authors acknowledge Dr Kumar Belani for his critical review of the manuscript. We also wish to thank our nurses in the unit and clinic for their tireless and excellent care of these challenging patients. This work was supported in part by the Children’s Cancer Research Fund (CP) and by the National Institutes of Health NS29099 (WK).
- Hurler syndrome
- Intellectual function
- Second hematopoietic cell transplantation