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Int J Oncol. 2008 Aug;33(2):239-44.

Central review of cytogenetics is necessary for cooperative group correlative and clinical studies of adult acute leukemia: the Cancer and Leukemia Group B experience.

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Division of Hematology and Oncology and the Comprehensive Cancer Center, The Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210-1228, USA.


The Cancer and Leukemia Group B has performed central review of karyotypes submitted by institutional cytogenetics laboratories from patients with acute myeloid (AML) and acute lymphoblastic (ALL) leukemia since 1986. We assessed the role of central karyotype review in maintaining accurate, high quality cytogenetic data for clinical and translational studies using two criteria: the proportion of karyotypes rejected (i.e. inadequate), and, among accepted (i.e. adequate) cases, the proportion of karyotypes whose interpretation was changed on central karyotype review. We compared the first four years during which central karyotype review was performed with a recent 4-year period and found that the proportion of rejected samples decreased significantly for both AML and ALL. However, during the latter period, central karyotype reviews still found 8% of AML and 16% of ALL karyotypes inadequate. Among adequate cases, the karyotype was revised in 26% of both AML and ALL samples. Some revisions resulted in changing the patients' assignment to particular World Health Organization diagnostic categories and/or moving patients from one prognostic group to another. Overall, when both data on rejection rates and data on karyotype revisions made in accepted cases were considered together, 32% of AML and 38% of ALL samples submitted were either rejected or revised on central karyotype review during the recent 4-year period. These data underscore the necessity of continued central karyotype review in multi-institutional cooperative group studies.

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