Vaccinating donors for hematopoietic cell transplantation: A systematic review and future perspectives

Ibrahim N. Muhsen, Mahmoud Aljurf, John R. Wingard, Gregory A. Poland, Krishna V. Komanduri, Jennifer A. Whitaker, Shahrukh K. Hashmi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (Allo-HCT) recipients are at an increased risk of infectious complications, which is a major cause of morbidity and mortality post-transplant. Vaccination of donors is one of the strategies that has been studied to improve immune reconstitution post-transplant, however the efficacy and safety of this strategy is not well reviewed in the literature. In this systematic review we sought to evaluate the current strategies of donor vaccination along with their immunogenicity, effectiveness and safety. Utilizing strict selection criteria with defined MeSH terminology, an electronic search was conducted from the following databases: Medline, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews and Scopus. Abstracts of various professional society meetings were also screened and hand searching of various reviews and guideline articles was carried out. The full text of 52 articles were reviewed, from which 5 articles satisfied the inclusion/exclusion criteria for effectiveness and immunogenicity trials and 1 article was included for safety data. Jadad score was used to assess the quality of included studies. The results of the included studies were inconsistent, and the studies were generally of suboptimal methodological quality. Most of the included studies (n = 3) investigated the use of more than one vaccine, however not all commonly used vaccines in HCT were investigated. None of the studies reported any long-term benefits for HCT recipients of vaccinated donors. Only one study reported safety data of using vaccination in donors. Given the suboptimal quality of the studies, and questionable effectiveness, donor vaccination cannot be recommended for all. Prospective high-quality vaccine trials in HCT donors are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6043-6052
Number of pages10
Issue number41
StatePublished - Oct 1 2018


  • Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplant
  • Donor
  • Immunization
  • Vaccination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • veterinary(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases


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