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Overview of Haematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant

When does a patient require a haematopoietic stem cell transplant?

A stem cell transplant (which includes blood and bone marrow) is used to increase the possibility of cure or remission for people suffering from blood cancers or disorders.

Type of blood cancers and disorders:
• Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML)
• Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL)
• Multiple Myeloma (MM)
• Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia (CML)
• Hodgkin's Disease (HL)
• Non-Hodgkin's Lymphomas (NHL)
• Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL)
• Aplastic Anaemia
• Myelodysplastic Syndromes

Others such as multiple sclerosis, autoimmune conditions, some solid organ cancers, immunodeficiency,  Thalassaemia and inborn error of metabolism in children.

Eligibility for transplant

After patients are referred to a transplant physician, they will undergo a series of assessments to ensure that they are suitable for transplant.

Programme Highlights

• The Haematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant Programme (HSCTP) for adult patients was established in Singapore General Hospital (SGH) in 1985.

• In 1998, HSCTP for paediatric patients was established in KK Women's & Children's Hospital (KKH). The programme performed its first matched sibling transplant and started direct cord blood harvest. In the same year, SGH HSCTP performed its first stem cell transplant using unrelated cord blood.

• in 1999, the first non-myeloablative allogeneic Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplant (PBSCT) was performed at SGH HSCTP. SGH Haematology Center with follow up clinic for post-bone marrow transplant was established.

• In the same year, the apheresis programme in KKH HSCTP commenced. The programme also started to harvest peripheral blood stem cells for autologous/allogeneic transplants. KKH HSCTP performed its first autologous PBSCT for a patient with stage 4 neuroblastoma.

• In 2002, the first matched sibling cord blood transplants were performed for two paediatric patients with Leukaemia at KKH HSCTP.

• In 2003, KKH HSCTP performed its first unrelated cord blood transplant for a patient with CML in blast crisis.

• In 2006, unrelated cord blood transplant using the first cord blood unit from Singapore Cord Blood Bank (SCBB) was performed on a patient with non-haematological condition of severe combined immunodefiency syndrome at KKH HSCTP. The programme also performed its first matched unrelated donor transplant for a patient with relapsed AML.

• In 2007,Mr Khaw Boon Wan, then Minister of Health, Singapore, officially opened KKH-CCF Childrens Cancer Centre. The Centre is among the largest paediatric children's cancer centres in South-east Asia. It treated 70% of childhood cancers in Singapore.

• In 2010, the SGH HSCTP launched its book on HSCT “Embracing Hope: Chronicles of Blood Stem Cell Transplants” in conjunction with the 1,000th transplant performed. KKH HSCTP performed its first autologous cord blood transplant for a patient with stage 4 neuroblastoma.

• In 2014, the first haplo-identical transplant was performed at KKH HSCTP.

• Over the last 30 years, SGH HSCTP has performed more than 1,300 transplants.

Related Links

KKH Children’s Cancer Centre

The Bone Marrow Donor Programme (BMDP)

Singapore Cord Blood Bank (SCBB)

The National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP)

Blood & Marrow Transplant Information Network (BMT Infonet)

Contact Us

SingHealth Duke-NUS Transplant Centre
Tel: +65  6326 5194
Fax: +65  6220 0730


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