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Blood. 1980 Sep;56(3):430-41.

Cellular phenotypes of normal and leukemic hemopoietic cells determined by analysis with selected antibody combinations.


Individual leukemic cells and the corresponding rare normal cell types in nonleukemic bone marrow were analyzed with various combinations of antisera (labeled with different fluorochromes: TRITC and FITC). Double staining for membrane Ia-like molecules (TRITC) and nuclear terminal transferase (FITC) was a very useful combination that distinguished common non-T, non-B ALL (Ia+,TdT+) and thymic ALL (Ia-,TdT+) from the rare cases of B ALL (Ia+,TdT-) and from AML (frequently Ia+, TdT-; in some cases Ia-, TdT-). Additional antisera (such as anti-ALL, anti-HuTLA, anti-immunoglobulin reagents, etc.) confirmed the diagnosis and further characterized the leukemic blasts. Ia+,TdT+ cells could be observed in low numbers in normal and nonleukemic regenerating marrow and were probably normal precursor cells; this reagent combinations was, therefore, not useful for monitoring residual non-T, non-B ALL blasts in treated patients. Other marker combinations detecting pre-B ALL blasts (double staining for cytoplasmic IgM and nuclear TdT) and Thy-ALL blasts (HuTLA+,TdT+) were, however, virtually leukemia specific in the bone marrow and could be used to effectively monitor residual leukemic cells throughout the disease. These combined single-cell assays are not only economical and informative but are also important for assessing the heterogeneity of leukemia and for standardizing new mouse or rat monoclonal antibodies for diagnosis.

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