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Leuk Res Treatment. 2012;2012:128617. doi: 10.1155/2012/128617. Epub 2011 Dec 1.

Pathogenesis of Metastatic Calcification and Acute Pancreatitis in Adult T-Cell Leukemia under Hypercalcemic State.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki 852-8523, Japan.


Human T-cell leukemia virus type-1 (HTLV-1) is the causative agent of adult T-cell leukemia (ATL). Hypercalcemia is common in patients with ATL. These patients rarely develop metastatic calcification and acute pancreatitis. The underlying pathogenesis of this condition is osteoclast hyperactivity with associated overproduction of parathyroid hormone-related protein, which results in hypercalcemia in association with bone demineralization. The discovery of the osteoclast differentiation factor receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB ligand (RANKL), its receptor RANK, and its decoy receptor osteoprotegerin (OPG), enhanced our understanding of the mechanisms of ATL-associated hypercalcemia. Macrophage inflammatory protein-1-α, tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-1, and interleukin-6 are important molecules that enhance the migration and differentiation of osteoclasts and the associated enhanced production of RANKL for osteoblast formation. In this paper, we focus on metastatic calcification and acute pancreatitis in ATL, highlighting recent advances in the understanding of the molecular role of the RANKL/RANK/OPG system including its interaction with various cytokines and calciotropic hormones in the regulation of osteoclastogenesis for bone resorption in hypercalcemic ATL patients.

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