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Bone Marrow Transplant Program

Our Bone Marrow Transplant program is committed to developing leading-edge strategies for autologous and allogeneic bone marrow and peripheral blood stem cell transplantation.

Explore the Bone Marrow Transplant Program


The Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center's Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) Program is world-renowned for its expertise in hematopoietic cell transplantation to treat a wide variety of hematological conditions. Currently, we conduct over 200 transplant procedures annually. In addition to comprehensive and compassionate multi-disciplinary care for our patients, we also conduct leading-edge clinical and translational research to develop innovative strategies for improving the outcomes of patients undergoing BMT.

Our program is advancing clinical care and research in several areas and these include:

Reducing the toxicities of BMT:

  • Development of new strategies for reducing both acute and chronic transplant related toxicities
  • Analysis of patient-reported quality of life undergoing BMT and developing new interventions to improve the experience of our patients and their caretakers
  • BMT Survivorship program to better address the long-term health needs of patients after transplant

Novel treatment approaches against graft-vs-host disease (GVHD):

  • Participation in national consortiums and clinical trials studying acute and chronic GVHD
  • Development of new therapies to prevent acute and chronic GVHD
  • Development of new therapies to treat acute and chronic GVHD
  • Restoration of microbiome diversity after BMT through fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT)

Developing safer and more effective stem cell transplant protocols for patients who do not have a fully matched related or unrelated donor:

  • Novel strategies using umbilical cord blood
  • Innovative protocols involving haploidentical (partially matched relatives) donors

Reducing disease relapse after stem cell transplantation:

  • Study the use of maintenance therapies after both autologous and allogeneic transplantation to reduce disease relapse

Increasing tolerance for solid organ transplants by performing combined kidney and bone marrow transplants for patients who have both advanced kidney disease and an underlying blood disease.

Collaborate with other colleagues in the Mass General Cancer Center to deliver innovative cellular therapies including chimeric antigen T-cells (CAR-T) and customized T-cell products.

Center of Excellence

The Mass General Cancer Center Bone Marrow Transplant Program has been designated a Center of Excellence by The National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP)/Be The Match.

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies which are conducted to answer questions. They can test many things from new drugs, new combinations of drugs, already approved drugs being studied to treat patients in new or different ways or investigating novel approaches to treat specific patients in unique circumstances. Clinical trials are run under strict guidelines with specific criteria for eligibility. The Mass General Bone Marrow Transplant Program has a very active clinical research portfolio with investigational studies covering almost all aspects of transplant care. The ultimate goal of clinical research is to improve the outcomes for all of our patients. If you are eligible for a clinical trial, your physician will offer you the chance for participation. We will comprehensively review the logistics and purpose of the trial and also offer alternatives including the standard of care.

Contact Yi-Bin Chen, MD, Director, BMT Program, with questions about Bone Marrow Transplant Clinical Trials:

Find listings of our current clinical trials.

Patient Education & Resources

What Is a Bone Marrow Transplant? You may also hear this procedure called a “hematopoietic stem cell transplant.” This procedure can be either autologous or allogeneic. In an autologous bone marrow transplant, patients receive their own stem cells. In an allogeneic bone marrow transplant, patients receive donor stem cells.

BMT Survivorship Program

BMT Survivorship Program

Learn about the Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) Survivorship Program.

Bone Marrow Transplant Unit Video Tour

Bone Marrow Transplant Unit Video Tour

Take a tour of the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit at the Mass General Cancer Center.

Bone Marrow Biopsy

Bone Marrow Biopsy

Learn about the bone marrow biopsy process.

Understanding Your Blood Counts

Understanding Your Blood Counts

Learn about the types of blood cells, what they do, and how they are measured.

Allogeneic Transplant Guide

Allogeneic Transplant Guide

This booklet will help to prepare you for your allogeneic transplant.

Allogeneic Transplant Discharge Guide

Allogeneic Transplant Discharge Guide

Learn more about taking care of yourself after an allogeneic bone marrow transplant.

Autologous Transplant Guide

Autologous Transplant Guide

This booklet will help to prepare you for your autologous transplant.

Autologous Transplant Discharge Guide

Autologous Transplant Discharge Guide

Learn more about taking care of yourself after an autologous bone marrow transplant here.

Tour the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit on Lunder 10

Take a tour of the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit at the Mass General Cancer Center. Learn all about the unit, including the services and amenities you and your loved ones can expect during your stay here.

Honors & Awards

View BMT team members honored for their commitment to the fight against cancer.

Caring For A Cure

Inspired by small acts of kindness, Caring For A Cure was founded by the nurses of the Mass General Adult Hematology/Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant program with a goal to improve the journey of patients and families with cancer through research, resources, and awareness.

News & Research

2018 American Society of Hematology Meetings in San Diego, CA

At this year’s ASH Annual Meeting, the ASH Practice Partnership Lunch focused on “How to Incorporate Palliative Care into Practice: Addressing Barriers and Solutions.” The session was moderated by ASH Committee on Practice Chair, Dr. Joseph Alvarnas from City of Hope, and the panelists included, Dr. Areej El-Jawahri from Massachusetts General Hospital, Dr. Tammy Kang from Texas Children’s Hospital, and Dr. Bob Arnold from the University of Pittsburgh. This well attended event was open to all U.S.-based practicing members. Excitingly, Dr. El-Jawahri will lead an upcoming multicenter phase 3 study in 2019 to definitely test the benefit of incorporating palliative care into the initial hospitalizations for patients undergoing hematopoietic cell transplantation.

Dr. Yi-Bin Chen, Director of the MGH BMT Program, gave two oral presentations on recent clinical trials. The first involved administration of the checkpoint inhibitor, pembrolizumab, after autologous stem cell transplantation for patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). The second study was based on his own original longstanding interest in incorporating vedolizumab, a monoclonal antibody directed against an intestinal specific white blood cell trafficking molecule, for the prevention of acute graft-vs-host disease (GVHD). The exciting interest and momentum behind this study is leading to an international phase 3 trial to definitively test this concept. Dr. Chen also gave a brief summary of this work which can be seen here.

2018 MGH Nursing Research Day

MGH BMT Program Quality Officer Susan O’Donnell, MSN, RN, OCN, BMT CN presented her study on increasing nurses’ knowledge and confidence in caring for central line in immunocompromised patients. This important study aimed to help reduce the number of central line associated bloodstream infections for inpatients undergoing BMT. Her work was awarded 1st prize in the Quality Improvement category.

BMT Survivorship program featured in The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA

The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA spoke with Julie Vanderklish, NP, about the comprehensive efforts involved in planning the BMT Survivorship program and bringing it to fruition. Ms Vanderklish is co-leader of the program under the directorship of Areej El-Jawahri, MD, a BMT and palliative care specialist at the Mass General Cancer Center. Read the article here. (Used with permission from The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA, Vol. 10, No. 2, March 2017.)


Contact the Cancer Center

Contact the Mass General Cancer Center to make an appointment or to learn more about our programs.