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Granulocyte Apheresis: Can It Be Associated with Anti PD-1 Therapy for Melanoma?

Alvise Sernicola 1,Anna Colpo 2,Anca Irina Leahu 2 and Mauro Alaibac 1Medicina 202258(10), 1398;

In the field of advanced melanoma, there is an urgent need to investigate novel approaches targeting specific components of the cancer–immunity cycle beyond immune checkpoint inhibitors. The authors reviewed the basic understanding of the role of neutrophils in cancer biology, and the latest clinical evidence supporting the correlation between cancer-associated neutrophils and the prognosis and response to the immunotherapy of advanced melanoma. Finally, they propose that granulocyte and monocyte apheresis, an emerging non-pharmacological treatment in current dermatology, could become an investigative treatment targeting melanoma-associated neutrophils which could be potentially used in combination with the usual immune checkpoint inhibitors.

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A case of severe generalized pustular psoriasis successfully treated with IL-17A monoclonal antibody and granulocyte removal therapy

Keiki ShimadaDaisuke KatagiriAika KatoNaoto NunoseMotohiko SatoYuri KatayamaKanako TerakawaTakahito NiikuraEmi SakamotoYuki YoshizakiMinami SuzukiTakashi FukayaTakeshi Tamaki & Hideki Takano Ren Replace Ther 8, 50 (2022).

Background Generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP) usually presents with fever, generalized flushing, and multiple sterile pustules on the skin, which histopathologically form subcorneal pustules characterized by Kogoj spongiform pustules. Granulocyte/monocyte adsorption apheresis (GMA) was approved in Japan in 2012. The use of biologics for psoriasis treatment is increasing. Several case reports have evaluated the combination of GMA and cyclosporine (CyA) for GPP. However, very few English reports on combining biologics and GMA in treating GPP exist. Case presentation A 79-year-old man with a history of hypertension, diabetes mellitus, chronic kidney disease, and atrial fibrillation was admitted. He had been consulting a dermatologist for psoriasis vulgaris (PV) since the age of 44. The patient was diagnosed with severe GPP and treated with 300 mg secukinumab (SEC) on day 3. SEC is a fully human monoclonal IgG1 antibody that targets IL-17A. Five doses were administered. In addition, GMA was administered once a week, three times from day 4. After the first administration of GMA, the inflammatory response and skin condition improved markedly. The patient was discharged from the hospital on day 34. Conclusions The present study is the first English-written report on the combined administration of SEC and GMA both instituted since admission for severe GPP, with immediate patient response to treatment. Notably, IL-17A plays a vital role in the pathogenesis of GPP. GMA can eliminate activated leukocytes, and the early introduction of combined IL-17 monoclonal antibody and GMA may allow disease suppression in patients with severe GPP, thus avoiding progression to multiorgan failure. Further studies may verify the effects of IL-17 monoclonal antibodies and GMA on severe GPP.

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Comparison of adsorption efficiency of leukocytes in single needle GMA with or without PSL treatment in patients with active ulcerative colitis

Yuki Noguchi 1Keiji Shimazu 2Teruhiko Totani 1Kazumasa Komura 3Atsuo Tanaka 2

Transfus Apher Sci  2022 Sep 22;103581. doi: 10.1016/j.transci.2022.103581. Online ahead of print.

Granulocyte monocyte adsorption (GMA) is considered one of the modalities for the remission induction of ulcerative colitis (UC). We previously reported that single-needle GMA (SN-GMA) could simplify the GMA. In the present study, the efficiency of SNGMA was examined according to the administration of corticosteroids (PSL) in UC patients. Blood sample were taken at proximal and distal side of the column during the SN-GMA treatment. Disease activity score (partial Mayo score: pMayo score) before and after the SN-GMA was investigated. The data of 18 patients with active UC (11 and 7 patients with PSL naïve and PSL use groups, respectively) treated with SN-GMA was analyzed. The mean pMayo score before the GMA treatment was comparable between the PSL naïve group (p = 0.26), whereas the score after the GMA treatment was significantly lower in PSL naïve group (0.8 + 0.6) than in PSL use group (3.0 + 2.1) (p = 0.04). Patients achieving the clinical remission were more observed in the PSL naive group (90.9%) than in the PSL use group (42.9%) (p = 0.047). The adsorption efficiency in the PSL naïve and PSL use groups were as follows: leukocytes (34.45 ± 7.43% vs 23.14 ± 7.56%: p = 0.008), granulocytes (41.74 ± 10.07% vs 27.99 ± 15.11%: p = 0.04), monocytes (32.59 ± 24.07% vs 33.16 ± 24.18%: p = 0.95), and lymphocytes (-1.87 ± 18.17% vs -3.79 ± 22.52%: p = 0.84), with a significant difference of the absorption efficiency in leukocytes and granulocytes. These data collectively indicate that the SN-GMA can be applied for the remission induction to active UC patients with a higher clinical remission rate in PSL naïve patients compared to PSL use patients.

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Vascular access in therapeutic apheresis: One size does not fit all

Mohadese Golsorkhi,Anoush Azarfar,Amir Abdipour

Ther Apher Dial  2022 Aug;26(4):694-716. doi: 10.1111/1744-9987.13799. Epub 2022 Feb 6.

Background: Therapeutic apheresis has been used in treating hematological and non-hematological diseases. For a successful procedure, efficient vascular access is required. Presently, peripheral venous access (PVA), central venous catheterization (CVC), implantable ports, and arteriovenous fistulas (AVFs) are used. This review aims to evaluate different type of access and their pros and cons to help physicians determine the best venous access. Methods: The electronic search included PubMed and Google Scholar up to November 2020. The Mesh terms were apheresis, peripheral catheterization, central catheterization, and arteriovenous fistula. Results: A total of 228 studies were found through database searching. Two independent authors reviewed the articles using their titles and abstracts; 88 articles were selected and the full text was reviewed. Finally, 26 were included. The inclusion criteria were studies incorporating patients with any indication for apheresis. Conclusion: PVA has been promoted in recent years in many centers across the United States to lower the rate of complications associated with vascular access and to make this procedure more accessible. Several factors are involved in selecting appropriate venous access, such as the procedure’s duration and frequency, patient’s vascular anatomy, and staff’s experience. In short-term procedures, temporary vascular access like PVA or CVC is preferred. Permanent vascular access such as AVF, tunneled cuffed central lines, and implantable ports are more beneficial in prolonged treatment period but each patient has to be evaluated individually by apheresis team for the most appropriate method.

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Use of granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis in dermatology (Review)

Laura Gnesotto 1Guido Mioso 1Mauro Alaibac 1

Exp Ther Med 2022 Jun 24;24(2):536. doi: 10.3892/etm.2022.11463. eCollection 2022 Aug. DOI: 10.3892/etm.2022.11463

Adsorptive granulocyte and monocyte apheresis (GMA) is an extracorporeal treatment that selectively removes activated myeloid lineage leukocytes from peripheral blood. This technique consists of a column with cellulose acetate beads as absorptive leukocytapheresis carriers, and was initially used to treat ulcerative colitis. A literature search was conducted to extract recently published studies about the clinical efficacy of GMA in patients with different skin disorders, reporting information on demographics, clinical symptoms, treatment and clinical course. Dermatological diseases, in which GMA has been performed, include generalized pustular psoriasis, pyoderma gangrenosum, palmoplantar pustular psoriasis, Behcet’s disease, Sweet’s syndrome, adult-onset Still’s disease, impetigo herpetiformis, reactive arthritis, acne and hidradenitis suppurativa syndrome, cutaneous allergic vasculitis and systemic lupus erythematosus. In most patients, GMA was started after the failure of conventional therapeutic options and it was helpful in the majority of cases. Based on the information summarized, GMA could be considered a valid non-pharmacological treatment option for patients with several dermatological conditions, which are difficult to treat with other pharmacological preparations.

 PASH syndrome; cutaneous allergic vasculitis; granulocyte and monocyte apheresis; neutrophilic dermatoses; reactive arthritis; systemic lupus erythematosus.

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Apheresis: A cell-based therapeutic tool for the inflammatory bowel disease

Farah Yasmin 1Hala Najeeb 1Unaiza Naeem 1Abdul Moeed 1Thoyaja Koritala 2Salim Surani 3 4

World J Clin Cases  2022 Jul 26;10(21):7195-7208. doi: 10.12998/wjcc.v10.i21.7195.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a hallmark of leukocyte infiltration, followed by the release of cytokines and interleukins. Disease progression to Ulcerative Colitis (UC) or Crohn’s Disease (CD) remained largely incurable. The genetic and environmental factors disrupt enteral bacteria in the gut, which hampers the intestinal repairing capability of damaged mucosa. Commonly practiced pharmacological therapies include 5-aminosalicylic acid with corticosteroids and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α. New interventions such as CDP571 and TNF-blocking RDP58 report the loss of patient response. This review discusses the non-pharmacologic selective granulocyte-monocyte-apheresis (GMA) and leukocytapheresis (LCAP) that have been proposed as treatment modalities that reduce mortality. GMA, an extracorporeal vein-to-vein technique, presents a strong safety profile case for its use as a viable therapeutic option compared to GMA’s conventional medication safety profile. GMA reported minimal to no side effects in the pediatric population and pregnant women. Numerous studies report the efficacious nature of GMA in UC patients, whereas data on CD patients is insufficient. Its benefits outweigh the risks and are emerging as a favored non-pharmacological treatment option. On the contrary, LCAP uses a general extracorporeal treatment that entraps leukocytes and suppresses cytokine release. It has been deemed more efficacious than conventional drug treatments, the former causing better disease remission, and maintenance. Patients with UC/CD secondary to complications have responded well to the treatment. Side effects of the procedure have remained mild to moderate, and there is little evidence of any severe adverse event occurring in most age groups. LCAP decreases the dependence on steroids and immunosuppressive therapies for IBD. The review will discuss the role of GMA and LCAP.

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Targeting neutrophils in inflammatory bowel disease: revisiting the role of adsorptive granulocyte and monocyte apheresis

Giorgos Bamias 1Evanthia Zampeli 2Eugeni Domènech 3 Expert Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol  2022 Jul 19;1-15. doi: 10.1080/17474124.2022.2100759.

Introduction: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic immune-mediated disease of the gastrointestinal tract comprising Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). While any part of the digestive tract can be affected in CD, mucosal inflammation in UC is limited to the colon. Differences and similarities between the two conditions are reflected by their pathophysiology. Areas covered: An overview of immunological aspects, pharmacological management, and biomarkers of IBD is provided. The role of adsorptive granulocyte and monocyte apheresis (GMA) is reviewed including its primary and secondary effects on the immune system, as well as clinical studies in IBD (mainly UC), and potential biomarkers for adsorptive GMA. Expert opinion: In UC, adsorptive GMA with Adacolumn (Adacolumn®, JIMRO Co., Ltd. Takasaki, Gunma, Japan) selectively depletes elevated myeloid lineage leukocytes and has a range of beneficial secondary immune effects. Adsorptive GMA is a safe and effective non-pharmacological treatment option for UC. Pilot studies have reported promising results for adsorptive GMA in combination with biological agents, although larger studies are required. Fecal calprotectin concentrations, neutrophil counts in histological samples and/or the neutrophil/lymphocyte ratio in peripheral blood may prove to be useful biomarkers for predicting GMA effectiveness in the future.

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Generalized Pustular Psoriasis in Pregnancy: Current and Future Treatments

Mariko Seishima 1 2Kento Fujii 3Yoko Mizutani 3 Am J Clin Dermatol 2022 Jun 15. doi: 10.1007/s40257-022-00698-9.

Generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP) is a rare, severe neutrophilic skin disease characterized by sudden widespread eruption of sterile pustules with or without systemic symptoms. GPP may be life threatening in cases with severe complications such as cardiovascular failure, acute respiratory distress syndrome, and serious infections. Impetigo herpetiformis (IH) is a GPP that is induced and exacerbated by pregnancy and occurs most frequently during the last trimester. IH may result in poor or fatal neonatal outcomes, including placental insufficiency, fetal abnormalities, stillbirth, and early neonatal death. Most patients have prompt remission in the postpartum period; however, earlier appearance and more severe symptoms are observed during subsequent pregnancies. Appropriate treatment and close monitoring of the mother and fetus are vital for the management of patients with IH. Particular attention is required for the management of patients with IH to avoid an influence on the fetus. However, data regarding treatments for GPP in pregnant women are sparse. Over the last decade, many patients with IH have been treated with cyclosporine, corticosteroids, tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitors, interleukin (IL)-17 and IL-12/23 inhibitors, and granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis (GMA). GMA may be an important option for patients with IH as it is presently one of the safest available therapeutic options, but there have been no reports to fully confirm its safety in pregnant patients with GPP. Alternatively, based on recent advances in the understanding of the role of the IL-36 axis in the pathogenesis of GPP, biologic agents that target the IL-36 pathway may demonstrate promising efficacy in IH.

Generalized Pustular Psoriasis in Pregnancy: Current and Future Treatments – PubMed (

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Efficacy of cytapheresis in patients with ulcerative colitis showing insufficient or lost response to biologic therapy

Iizuka M, Etou T, Sagara S.  World J Gastroenterol 2022; 28(34): 4959-4972 DOI: 10.3748/wjg.v28.i34.4959

For the optimal management of refractory ulcerative colitis (UC), secondary loss of response (LOR) and primary non-response to biologics is a critical issue. This article aimed to summarize the current literature on the use of cytapheresis (CAP) in patients with UC showing a poor response or LOR to biologics and discuss its advantages and limitations. Further, we summarized the efficacy of CAP in patients with UC showing insufficient response to thiopurines or immunomodulators (IM). Eight studies evaluated the efficacy of CAP in patients with UC with inadequate responses to thiopurines or IM. There were no significant differences in the rate of remission and steroid-free remission between patients exposed or not exposed to thiopurines or IM. Three studies evaluated the efficacy of CAP in patients with UC showing an insufficient response to biologic therapies. Mean remission rates of biologics exposed or unexposed patients were 29.4 % and 44.2%, respectively. Fourteen studies evaluated the efficacy of CAP in combination with biologics in patients with inflammatory bowel disease showing a poor response or LOR to biologics. The rates of remission/response and steroid-free remission in patients with UC ranged 32%-69% (mean: 48.0%, median: 42.9%) and 9%-75% (mean: 40.7%, median: 38%), respectively. CAP had the same effectiveness for remission induction with or without prior failure on thiopurines or IM but showed little benefit in patients with UC refractory to biologics. Although heterogeneity existed in the efficacy of the combination therapy with CAP and biologics, these combination therapies induced clinical remission/response and steroid-free remission in more than 40% of patients with UC refractory to biologics on average. Given the excellent safety profile of CAP, this combination therapy can be an alternative therapeutic strategy for UC refractory to biologics. Extensive prospective studies are needed to understand the efficacy of combination therapy with CAP and biologics.

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Toxic Megacolon: Background, Pathophysiology, Management Challenges and Solutions

Jiten Desai 1Mohamed Elnaggar 2Ahmed A Hanfy 2Rajkumar Doshi 2

Clin Exp Gastroenterol. 2020 May 19;13:203-210. doi: 10.2147/CEG.S200760. eCollection 2020.

Leukocytapheresis (LCAP) is useful in the management of TM

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