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Donor Natural Killer Cell Therapy and Aldesleukin in Treating Patients With High Risk Acute Myeloid Leukemia Undergoing Donor Stem Cell Transplant

This study is ongoing, but not recruiting participants.
Information provided by:
Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota Identifier:
First received: March 15, 2006
Last updated: September 27, 2011
Last verified: September 2011

RATIONALE: Giving chemotherapy, such as fludarabine phosphate and cyclophosphamide, and total body irradiation, before peripheral blood stem cell transplant helps stop the growth of cancer cells. It may also stop the patient's immune system from rejecting the donor's stem cells. When the healthy stem cells and natural killer (NK) cells from a donor are infused into the patient they may help the patient's bone marrow make stem cells, red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Giving IL-2 (aldesleukin) after NK cell infusion may stimulate them to kill any remaining cancer cells.

PURPOSE: This phase I/II (currently enrolling in phase II) trial is studying how well a donor natural killer cell infusion works in treating patients who are undergoing donor stem cell transplant for acute myeloid leukemia.

Condition Intervention Phase
Acute Myelogenous Leukemia
Biological: aldesleukin
Biological: natural killer cells
Drug: cyclophosphamide
Drug: fludarabine phosphate
Procedure: allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation
Radiation: total body irradiation
Biological: Thymoglobulin
Drug: Cyclosporin A
Phase 1
Phase 2

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Non-Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Reduced Intensity Haploidentical Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) Supplemented With Donor Natural Killer (NK) Cell Infusions in Patients With High Risk Myeloid Malignancies Who Are Unsuitable for Fully Myeloablative Transplantation

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Disease-free survival [ Time Frame: Month 6, 1 Year ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • In vivo expansion of a donor CD3- CD19- selected NK cell product [ Time Frame: Day -1 (12 days after NK cell infusion) ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Rate of graft failure [ Time Frame: Day 28 ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Measured by <500 absolute neutrophile count by day 28.

  • Incidence of grade III-IV acute Graft Versus Host Disease [ Time Frame: Month 6 ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Rate of treatment-related mortality [ Time Frame: Day 100 ] [ Designated as safety issue: Yes ]
  • Incidence of chronic Graft Versus Host Disease [ Time Frame: 1 Year ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Incidence of disease relapse [ Time Frame: 1 Year ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Incidence of post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder [ Time Frame: 1 Year ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Estimated Enrollment: 90
Study Start Date: January 2005
Estimated Study Completion Date: January 2015
Estimated Primary Completion Date: January 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Stem Cell Transplant with Donor Natural Killer Cells
Patients with high risk myeloid malignancies undergoing hematopoeitic stem cell transplant receiving donor natural killer cells.
Biological: aldesleukin
Administered subcutaneously (SQ) 9 million units every other day beginning Day -12 through -2 (evening of natural killer cell infusion) for a total of 6 doses.
Other Names:
  • Interleukin-2
  • IL-2
Biological: natural killer cells
Infusion given on Day -12; The targeted infused cell dose of CD3- CD19- selected NK product is within the range of 2-3 x 10^7 cells/kg.
Other Name: therapeutic allogeneic lymphocytes
Drug: cyclophosphamide
Administered intravenously (IV) 50 mg/kg on Days -16 and -15
Other Name: Cytoxan
Drug: fludarabine phosphate
Administered intravenously (IV) 35 mg/m^2 on Days -18 through -14
Other Name: Fludara
Procedure: allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation
On day 0, patients will receive an allogeneic transplant using pool cells from the day -1 and day 0 PBSC which will be CD34+ selected as the donor graft. The graft will be infused over 15-60 minutes.
Other Name: PBSC
Radiation: total body irradiation
Administered on Day -13, 200 cGy two times.
Biological: Thymoglobulin
intravenous (IV) 3 mg/kg on Day 0 (day of donor CD34 cell infusion)
Other Name: rabbit ATG
Drug: Cyclosporin A
1.5 mg/kg by mouth or intravenously for target dose range of 150-250; day -15 through day -8.
Other Name: CSA

Detailed Description:



  • To determine the disease-free survival at 6 months and 1 year in patients with high-risk myeloid malignancies who undergo a reduced-intensity haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) supplemented with donor natural killer (NK) cells.


  • To evaluate the in vivo expansion of a donor CD3- CD19- selected NK cell product administered after a preparative regimen of cyclophosphamide, fludarabine, and total body irradiation (TBI) and HSCT in these patients.
  • To determine the rate of graft failure defined by absolute neutrophil count (ANC) < 500/mm³ by day 28.
  • To determine the incidence of grade III-IV acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) at 6 months.
  • To determine the rate of treatment-related mortality at day 100.
  • To determine the incidence of chronic GVHD at 12 months.
  • To determine the incidence of disease relapse at 12 months.
  • To determine the incidence of post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder at 12 months.


  • To correlate immune reconstitution of the in vivo expanded haploidentical NK cells with clinical outcomes.

OUTLINE: This is an open-label study.

Patients receive fludarabine intravenous (IV) over 1 hour on days -18 to -14 and cyclophosphamide IV over 2 hours on days -16 and -15. Patients receive cyclosporin A on Day -15 through Day -8. Patients undergo total body irradiation on day -13. Patients then receive an infusion of donor natural killer cells on day -12 and interleukin-2 subcutaneously on alternating days between days -12 to -2. Patients receive thymoglobulin (ATG) and undergo allogeneic peripheral blood stem cell transplantation on day 0.

After completion of study treatment, patients are followed periodically.

PROJECTED ACCRUAL: A total of 90 patients will be accrued for this study.


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 70 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 4.2 High risk acute myeloid leukemia (AML) fitting within one of the following disease groups:

    • Primary induction failure defined as no complete remission (CR) after two or more induction cycles. For primary induction failure (PIF) or refractory AML, the patient must have <5% circulating blasts (and <1000 absolute circulating blasts) beyond Day 28 after last chemo. During work-up period if circulating blasts rise above these levels, the patient is ineligible. The use of hydrea or other non-induction cytotoxic agents is not allowed to reduce blasts and achieve this eligibility. If the blasts are higher than these limits, the patient should be treated on an alternative therapeutic protocol or receive another reinduction attempt. (See section 7 regarding final check of blast status within 7 days of preparative regimen start).
    • Relapsed AML with low disease burden must have less than 5% marrow blasts at time of enrollment for patients who did not receive re-induction or measured at least 28 days from the start of reinduction therapy for patients who did receive re-induction (maximum of 2 re-induction attempts). Patients who have relapsed more than 12 months following a prior HCT and did not reach CR following one re-induction cycle but have less than 10% marrow blasts are eligible.
    • CR3 or greater. This will include CRp defined as CR without platelet recovery to 100,000/mcL.
    • CR1 or CR2 with high risk features (therapy induced, prior myelodysplastic syndrome [MDS] or myeloproliferative disease [MPD], high risk cytogenetic or molecular phenotype) with no available alternate (sibling, unrelated donor [URD] or umbilical cord blood [UCB]) donors.

Patients with prior central nervous system (CNS) involvement are eligible provided that it has been treated and CFS must be clear for at least 2 weeks prior to enrollment.

  • Available related HLA-haploidentical donor (3-5 of 6 HLA, A, B and DRB1 matched)
  • Karnofsky performance status > 50
  • Pulmonary Function: oxygen saturation ≥ on room air and diffusion lung capacity for carbon monoxide (DLCOcor) ≥ 40%
  • Cardiac Function: Ejection fraction (EF) ≥ 30%, no uncontrolled angina, severe uncontrolled ventricular arrhythmias, or electrocardiographic evidence of acute ischemia or active conduction system abnormalities.
  • Able to be off prednisone or other immunosuppressive medications for at least 3 days prior to Day 0
  • Women of child bearing potential must have a negative pregnancy test within 14 days prior to study registration and agree to use adequate birth control during study treatment
  • Human anti-mouse antibody (HAMA) monitoring: All subjects will be questioned about prior exposure to antibody therapy (including OKT3, rituximab, trastuzumab, etc).

    • For subjects with no prior antibody therapy exposure, no further action will be taken
    • For subjects who have received previous antibody therapies 10 ml of serum will be drawn before starting therapy. The presence of HAMA will not preclude proceeding with treatment.
  • Voluntary written consent signed before performance of any study related procedure not part of the normal medical care.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Biphenotypic leukemia
  • New or progressive pulmonary infiltrates on screening chest x-ray or chest computed tomography (CT) scan that has not been evaluated with bronchoscopy, if feasible. Infiltrates attributed to infection must be stable/improving (with associated clinical improvement) after 1 week of appropriate therapy (2 weeks for presumed or documented fungal infections). Surgical resection waives any waiting requirements.
  • Uncontrolled bacterial or viral infections. Chronic asymptomatic viral hepatitis is allowed.
  • Known hypersensitivity to any of the study agents used
  • Received other investigational drugs within the 14 days before enrollment

Donor Selection:

  • 12-75 years of age
  • > 40 kilogram body weight
  • In general good health as determined by the evaluating physician
  • Donors must be HLA-A, B, DRB1 haploidentical (3-5/6 antigens HLA, A, B, DRB1) match to recipient. Patients and donors will be typed for HLA-A, B and C using at least intermediate resolution DNA techniques for DRB1 at high (allele) resolution. KIR B genotyping will be done on all haploidentical donors, and when feasible, the donor with the most favorable KIR gene profile will be used.
  • Able and willing to have up to 4 separate apheresis collections per formed
  • Not pregnant
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV): HIV-1, HIV-2 negative; HTLV-1, HTLV-2 negative, Hepatitis B and C negative
  • Voluntary written consent
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00303667

United States, Minnesota
Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States, 55455
Sponsors and Collaborators
Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota
Principal Investigator: Sarah Cooley, MD Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota
  More Information

Additional Information:
No publications provided

Responsible Party: Sarah Cooley, MD, Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota Identifier: NCT00303667     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 2004LS042, UMN-MT2003-23, UMN-IRB-0405M60481
Study First Received: March 15, 2006
Last Updated: September 27, 2011
Health Authority: United States: Food and Drug Administration

Keywords provided by Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota:
NK cells
natural killer cells
hematopoietic cell transplant
acute myelogenous leukemia

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Leukemia, Myeloid
Leukemia, Myeloid, Acute
Neoplasms by Histologic Type
Fludarabine phosphate
Alkylating Agents
Anti-HIV Agents
Anti-Infective Agents
Anti-Retroviral Agents
Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic
Antineoplastic Agents
Antineoplastic Agents, Alkylating
Antirheumatic Agents
Antiviral Agents
Immunologic Factors
Immunosuppressive Agents
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Myeloablative Agonists
Pharmacologic Actions
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Therapeutic Uses processed this record on November 24, 2014