A study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology found that reduced-intensity allogeneic stem cell transplantation is the best fit for many patients ages 60 and older with intermediate-to-high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome. For these patients, early treatment boosted overall life expectancy by an average of eight months compared with patients who received supporting therapies. Survival rates for low-risk MDS were better with nontransplant therapies. "The hope is that this study will at least inform the decision-making process and that older patients with high-risk MDS will at least be referred for [transplant] consultation," said researcher John Koreth of Boston's Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School.

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