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Br J Haematol. 2002 Jul;118(1):147-50.

Expression of the BCRP gene (ABCG2/MXR/ABCP) in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.

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University of Jena, Department of Pediatrics, Jena, Germany.


The breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP), also known as mitoxantrone resistance protein (MXR) or placenta ABC protein (ABC-P), is the second member of the ABCG subfamily of ABC transport proteins (gene symbol ABCG2). BCRP has been detected in acute myeloid leukaemia and in breast, colon and gastric cancer but there has been no reports regarding BCRP expression in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL). We report the first results of BCRP expression in childhood ALL. Sixty-seven children (47 initial stage, 20 relapses) with ALL were analysed for BCRP gene expression by TaqMan real-time polymerase chain reaction. The expression of BCRP in mononuclear cells obtained from the bone marrow (BM) and peripheral blood (PB) of healthy donors was also investigated. There was no relationship between BCRP expression and age, sex, initial blast cell count, prednisolone response or BM response on d 15 and 33. Patients with T-lineage ALL showed a lower expression of BCRP (P = 0.044). Kaplan-Meier analysis of the relapse-free interval showed no prognostic significance of BCRP expression when different levels of BCRP expression were used as cut-off points. No significant difference in expression of BCRP mRNA was measured between initial-stage and relapsed-stage ALL or between normal MNC obtained from BM and ALL patients. The results indicate a low expression of BCRP in childhood ALL. Relationships between BCRP and clinical, molecular or in vivo resistance characteristics of the patients were not observed.

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