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Leukemia. 1993 Mar;7(3):349-60.

An infectious etiology for common acute lymphoblastic leukemia in childhood?

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Leukaemia Research Fund Centre, Institute of Cancer Research, London, UK.


Childhood leukemia is a biologically and clinically diverse disease and is likely to arise via a number of etiological pathways. The common, B-cell precursor, form of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (cALL) accounts for the peak of childhood leukemia at 2-5 years of age. Recent epidemiological data, reviewed here, indicate that risk of cALL is increased by higher socio-economic status, isolation, and other community characteristics suggestive of abnormal patterns of infection during infancy. These data are compatible with the emerging concept that cALL may be a rare response to common infection(s).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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