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Int J Hematol. 2015 Jan;101(1):52-7. doi: 10.1007/s12185-014-1710-z. Epub 2014 Nov 29.

Outcome of pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia with very late relapse: a retrospective analysis by the Tokyo Children's Cancer Study Group (TCCSG).

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Department of Pediatrics, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, 113-8655, Japan,


Relapse period is strongly associated with second relapse risk in relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in children. In this context, the treatment outcome of very late relapse should be better; however, data regarding very late relapse is limited. We retrospectively analyzed the outcomes of two consecutive Tokyo Children's Cancer Study Group (TCCSG) ALL trials (1995-2004) with a focus on late relapse, which was divided into two categories: late relapse (6-24 months from the end of therapy, n = 48) and very late relapse (>24 months from the end of therapy, n = 57). Forty-three patients (29 late relapse and 14 very late relapse) received allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) at second remission. The event-free survival (EFS) probabilities of late relapse and very late relapse were 54.5 ± 7.3 and 64.8 ± 6.8 % at 7 years, respectively (P = 0.36), and were not significantly different. However, the second relapse incidence of late relapse (34.7 ± 7.1 %) was higher than that of very late relapse (15.5 ± 5.1 %, P = 0.03). The second relapse risk was low for very late relapse ALL, which suggests that these patients should be treated without allogeneic HSCT.

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