Stefanie Sarantopoulos, MD, PhD

Sarantopoulos, StefanieAssistant Professor

Department of Medicine

21-247 Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, CB #7295




Adult hematopoietic stem/bone marrow transplantation (HSCT) involves the transfer of donor cells to patients/recipients suffering from leukemia, lymphoma or other blood/bone marrow cancers. Dr. Sarantopoulos primary laboratory interest is study of the significant immune pathology that develops in patients who have undergone HSCT. While HSCT offers the possibility of cure for many patients with hematologic diseases, the full potential of HSCT has not been realized because of transplant-related complications. Chronic graft versus host disease (GVHD) has become the most significant post-HSCT cause of morbidity and mortality. Chronic GVHD has an adverse impact on survival that has not improved significantly over the last 30 years. The only standard therapy for chronic GVHD is high-dose steroids. Targeted therapy for chronic GVHD has been difficult to develop due to limited understanding of immunopathologic mechanisms in human cGVHD. Responses to rituximab suggest that B cells play a role in cGVHD, but the mechanisms that promote and sustain B cell involvement have not been elucidated. If we can better understand the pathophysiology of chronic GVHD we can develop targeted therapeutic agents specific for BAFF pathways and activated B cells that may lead to decreased morbidity and mortality in our patients.


Allen JL, Fore MS, Wooten J, Roehrs PA, Bhuiya NS, Hoffert T, Sharf A, Deal AM, Armistead P, Coghill J, Gabriel DA, Irons R, Essenmacher A, Shea TC, Richards K, Cutler C, Ritz J, Serody J, Baldwin AS, Sarantopoulos S. B cells from patients with chronic GVHD are activated and primed for survival via BAFF-mediated pathways. Blood. 2012 Sep 20;120(12):2529-36.

Fore M, Jagasia M, Sarantopoulos S, Richards KL. Further examination of BAFF SNPs in cGVHD. Blood. 2012 Jul 19;120(3):700-1.

Fedoriw Y, Samulski TD, Deal AM, Dunphy CH, Sharf A, Shea TC, Serody JS, Sarantopoulos S. Bone marrow B cell precursor number after allogeneic stem cell transplantation and GVHD development. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 2012 Jun;18(6):968-73.

Levine JE, Paczesny S, Sarantopoulos S. Clinical applications for biomarkers of acute and chronic graft-versus-host disease. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 2012 Jan;18(1 Suppl):S116-24.

Armistead PM, Liang S, Li H, Lu S, Van Bergen CA, Alatrash G, St John L, Hunsucker SA, Sarantopoulos S, Falkenburg JH, Molldrem JJ. Common minor histocompatibility antigen discovery based upon patient clinical outcomes and genomic data. PLoS One. 2011;6(8):e23217.

Porcheray F, Miklos DB, Floyd BH, Sarantopoulos S, Bellucci R, Soiffer RJ, Antin JH, Alyea EP, Ritz J, Zorn E. Combined CD4 T-cell and antibody response to human minor histocompatibility antigen DBY after allogeneic stem-cell transplantation. Transplantation. 2011 Aug 15;92(3):359-65.

Coghill JM, Sarantopoulos S, Moran TP, Murphy WJ, Blazar BR, Serody JS. Effector CD4+ T cells, the cytokines they generate, and GVHD: something old and something new. Blood. 2011 Mar 24;117(12):3268-76.

Sarantopoulos S, Stevenson KE, Kim HT, Washel WS, Bhuiya NS, Cutler CS, Alyea EP, Ho VT, Soiffer RJ, Antin JH, Ritz J. Recovery of B-cell homeostasis after rituximab in chronic graft-versus-host disease. Blood. 2011 Feb 17;117(7):2275-83.

Ofran Y, Kim HT, Brusic V, Blake L, Mandrell M, Wu CJ, Sarantopoulos S, Bellucci R, Keskin DB, Soiffer RJ, Antin JH, Ritz J. Diverse patterns of T-cell response against multiple newly identified human Y chromosome-encoded minor histocompatibility epitopes. Clin Cancer Res. 2010 Mar 1;16(5):1642-51.

pubmed Complete list of publications.