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Pediatr Res. 2009 Mar;65(3):334-40. doi: 10.1203/PDR.0b013e3181961d2a.

Correlation of clinical features with the mutational status of GM-CSF signaling pathway-related genes in juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia.

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Department of Pediatrics, Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine, Nagoya 466-8550, Japan.


Mutations in RAS, neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), and PTPN11, constituents of the granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor signaling pathway, have been recognized in patients with juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML). We assessed 71 children with JMML for NRAS, KRAS, and PTPN11 mutations and evaluated their clinical significance. Of the 71 patients, three had been clinically diagnosed with neurofibromatosis type 1, and PTPN11 and NRAS/KRAS mutations were found in 32 (45%) and 13 (18%) patients, respectively. No simultaneous aberrations were found. Compared with patients with RAS mutation or without any aberrations, patients with PTPN11 mutation were significantly older at diagnosis and had higher fetal Hb levels, both of which have been recognized as poor prognostic factors. As was expected, overall survival was lower for patients with the PTPN11 mutation than for those without (25 versus 64%; p = 0.0029). In an analysis of 48 patients who received hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, PTPN11 mutations were also associated with poor prognosis for survival. Mutation in PTPN11 was the only unfavorable factor for relapse after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (p = 0.001). All patients who died after relapse had PTPN11 mutation. These results suggest that JMML with PTPN11 mutation might be a distinct subgroup with specific clinical characteristics and poor outcome.

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