Stem cell and bone marrow transplants (BMT) 

A stem cell or bone marrow transplant replaces damaged blood cells with healthy ones. It can be used to treat conditions affecting the blood cells, such as leukaemia and lymphoma. We also perform transplants for patient with immunodeficiencies.

The bone marrow transplant and haematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) service at University College Hospital (UCLH) is the largest transplant centre in Europe and provides a full range of transplant services.

There is a large stem cell collection (apheresis) unit and bone marrow harvesting service at UCLH providing cells for both UCLH patients, and on behalf of the Anthony Nolan Trust for patients at other centres in the UK and around the world.

The adult HSCT unit works closely with the UCLH Adolescent Haemato-oncology unit, which provides the same transplant services to patients aged 13-19 years.

  • Autologous transplants

    This involves removing stem cells from your own body and transplanting them later, after any damaged or diseased cells have been removed. You will have a new clinical nurse specialist (CNS) who will coordinate this and who will be your 'key worker', but you will return to your original CNS - three months after your transplant.

  • Allogeneic transplants

    This involves taking healthy stem cells from the blood or bone marrow of one person – either a family member or an unrelated donor – and transferring them to another person. If you are having this type of transplant, a transplant clinical nurse specialist (CNS) will become your permanent 'key worker’.

  • Treatment

    The transplant team will decide whether you are suitable for transplant treatment. Your treatment may take place as an outpatient in an ambulatory setting (without the need for an overnight stay in hospital, but in nearby accommodation) at University College London Hospital Macmillan Cancer Centre, or in the main hospital building - University College Hospital. This will be dependent upon the type of transplant you are having, and will be discussed with you as your transplant is being planned.

  • Patient aftercare

    All patients undergoing transplant at UCLH are closely followed up following their procedure.

    For autologous transplant patients, you will be followed up at UCLH for approximately three months and referred back to your referring centre.

    For allogeneic transplant patients, your post-transplant care will be delivered almost exclusively by UCLH and you will remain in frequent contact with the service.

  • Research

    The HSCT service at UCLH has strong links with University College London (UCL). The service has a very strong track record in translational research and an on-going commitment to pioneering new therapies and participating in both national and international trials.

  • Contact

 Consultants

Prof Ronjon Chakraverty, Consultant Haematologist

Prof Ronjon Chakraverty

Professor Chakraverty is an attending physician on the Bone Marrow Transplantation programme that runs at the Royal Free London and University College London Hospitals.

Full consultant profile

Prof Adele Fielding, Consultant Haematologist

Prof Adele Fielding

Adele Fielding is Professor of Haematology at UCL with a clinical practice at UCLH, where she works within the leukaemia service. Her primary expertise is in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. She chairs the UK National Cancer Research Institute Adult ALL subgroup. As a clinician scientist, she is heavily involved in the UK's clinical trials programme for ALL and am Chief Investigator of UKALL14 and UKALL60+, the UK's frontline academically-initiated trials for ALL. Her research lab program takes advantage of the opportunity to do translational work arising from these trials.

Full consultant profile

Dr Panagiotis Kottaridis, Consultant Haematologist

Dr Panagiotis Kottaridis

Dr Panos Kottaridis is a consultant haematologist specialising in leukaemia and bone marrow transplantation.

Prof Stephen MacKinnnon, Consultant Haematologist

Prof Stephen MacKinnnon

Professor Mackinnon leads the bone marrow and stem cell program at University College London. He attended medical school at the University of Glasgow. He subsequently trained in Internal Medicine and Haemato-oncology in Glasgow. This was followed by a transplant fellowship at the Hammersmith Hospital in London where he developed an interest in graft-versus-leukaemia reactions.

In 1995 he returned to London to his current position. In recent years he has developed an interest novel conditioning regimens. Current research interests include adoptive immunotherapy and immune reconstitution following allogeneic stem cell transplantation. The program has world class transplant outcomes for patients with leukaemia and lymphoma.

Full consultant profile

Prof Emma Morris, Professor of Clinical Cell and Gene Therapy and Consultant Haematologist

Prof Emma Morris

Professor Emma Morris is a consultant haematologist at UCLH. Her clinical interest is in the field of haematopoietic stem cell transplantation. She is currently secretary of the Clinical Trials Committee of the British Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation and on the Editorial Board of the British Journal for Haematology.

Full consultant profile

Prof Karl Peggs, Transplant Science and Cancer Immunology

Dr Karl Peggs

Professor Karl Peggs is an honorary consultant in haematology and transplantation at UCLH. His research interests include immune reconstitution, pathogen-specific adoptive cellular therapies, and regulatory checkpoint-directed immunotherapeutics. Dr Peggs is a member of the Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research Clinical Trials Committee, a Trustee of the Teens Unite charity, and has contributed to several international working parties on infectious complications and relapse following stem cell transplantation. He is Chief Investigator for four UKCRN national studies investigating transplantation in Hodgkin Lymphoma and cellular therapies for cytomegalovirus. Dr Peggs has also been the senior lecturer in Stem Cell Transplantation and Immunotherapy at UCL since 2003.

Full consultant profile

Dr Kirsty Thomson, Consultant Haematologist

Dr Kirsty Thomson

Dr Kirsty Thomson is a consultant haematologist specialising in bone marrow transplant (BMT) and haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT).

Full consultant profile

 Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS)

Jane Bowley, Bone Marrow Transplant Clinical Nurse Specialist

Jane Bowley

Jane specialises in caring for patients who need allogeneic and autologous stem cell transplants. 

“The most rewarding part of my role is supporting patients through their transplant and being involved in their long term follow up”

Shari Denovan, Bone Marrow Transplant Clinical Nurse Manager

Shari Denovan

Shari Denovan is UCLH’s bone marrow transplant clinical nurse manager. Her areas of research interest include sexuality and counselling.

“The most rewarding part of my role at UCLH is educating patients, and arming them with information and tools to make adjustments to their lives post bone marrow transplant"

Jackie Horder, Donor Clinical Nurse Specialist

Jackie Horder

Jackie deals exclusively with the care of all the allogeneic bone marrow/peripheral stem cell transplant donors. This covers individuals who are either a blood relative of the patient, or an unrelated volunteer via a registry. She maintains strong links with both the Anthony Nolan Trust and Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.

“The most rewarding part of my role is to educate and support individuals through a process that can be daunting and completely unfamiliar, and to make them feel comfortable and secure”