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Leuk Lymphoma. 2004 Feb;45(2):301-8.

Serum levels of CD137 ligand and CD178 are prognostic factors for progression of myelodysplastic syndrome.

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Medizinische Klinik II, Eberhard Karls University, Tuebingen, Germany.


Excess apoptosis leading to ineffective hematopoiesis is a common feature of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). CD178 (Fas ligand/APO-1 ligand) and CD137 ligand (CD137L), 2 molecules involved in the regulation of apoptosis, have previously been found in sera of patients with malignancies and have been hypothesized to participate in the pathogenesis of various diseases. We analyzed sera of patients with MDS and found that while time to progression of MDS correlated with the IPSS score there was no correlation of CD137L or CD178 serum levels with this score or with karyotype, bone marrow blast count or cytopenia. However, when cut-off-values for significant differentiation between cases with higher/lower levels of these molecules were determined we found that high levels of soluble CD137L (sCD137L) and low serum levels of soluble CD178 (sCD178) correlate with statistical significance to rapid progression of disease as estimated by log-rank-test. Conversely, low levels of sCD137L and high levels of sCD178 correlate significantly with prolongation of time to progression of disease. Our results indicate that serum levels of sCD137L and sCD178 represent valuable novel indicators for prognosis and disease progression and may be a useful parameter for treatment decisions in patients with MDS.

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