Cancer News
OncoLink Cancer News - HealthDay


ASH: Gene Findings May Benefit Infants With Leukemia

-- Rick Ansorge

Monday, December 7, 2009

MONDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- In infants with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, newly discovered translocations of the MLL gene on chromosome 11 may help guide treatment decisions, according to research presented this week at the annual meeting of the American Society of Hematology, held from Dec. 5 to 8 in New Orleans.

Blaine W. Robinson, Ph.D., of The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and colleagues studied 221 infants with acute lymphoblastic leukemia who were enrolled in a clinical trial.

The researchers found that 74 percent of the patients had MLL translocations in the acute lymphoblastic leukemia cells. They identified the two most common partner genes that fused with the MLL gene as AF4 on chromosome 4 and ENL on chromosome 19, and found that event-free survival associated with these translocations was 34 and 29 percent, respectively. By contrast, children with the third most common partner gene, AF9, and children whose MLL gene was unaffected had significantly higher event-free survival rates (68 and 66 percent, respectively).

"Our ability to classify acute lymphoblastic leukemia based on specific partner genes of MLL may provide a new way to categorize which infants might benefit from specific types of treatment," senior author Carolyn A. Felix, M.D., said in a statement. "We also hope these findings will contribute to the development of new, molecularly targeted therapies for infants with this grim form of cancer that we seek to conquer."

Abstract
More Information

Specialties Cardiology
Diabetes & Endocrinology
Internal Medicine
Family Practice

Copyright © 2009 ScoutNews, LLC. All rights reserved.


I Wish You Knew

How an oncology social worker can improve your cancer experience

View More



Blogs and Web Chats

OncoLink Blogs give our readers a chance to react to and comment on key cancer news topics and provides a forum for OncoLink Experts and readers to share opinions and learn from each other.




OncoLink OncoPilot

Facing a new cancer diagnosis or changing the course of your current treatment? Let our cancer nurses help you through!

Learn More