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Abstract: Multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma remain the most common indications for high-dose chemotherapy and autologous peripheral blood stem cell rescue. While a CD34+ cell dose of 1 × 106 /kg is considered the minimum required for engraftment, higher CD34+ doses correlate with improved outcome. Numerous studies, however, support targeting a minimum CD34+ cell dose of 2.0 × 106 /kg, and an “optimal” dose of 4 to 6 × 106 /kg for a single transplant. Unfortunately, up to 40% of patients fail to mobilize an optimal CD34+ cell dose using myeloid growth factors alone. Plerixafor is a novel reversible inhibitor of CXCR4 that significantly increases the mobilization and collection of higher numbers of hematopoietic progenitor cells. Two randomized multi-center clinical trials in patients with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and multiple myeloma have demonstrated that the addition of plerixafor to granulocyte-colony stimulating factor increases the mobilization and yield of CD34+ cells in fewer apheresis days, which results in durable engraftment. This review summarizes the pharmacology and evidence for the clinical efficacy of plerixafor in mobilizing hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells, and discusses potential ways to utilize plerixafor in a cost-effective manner in patients with these diseases.
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