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Leuk Lymphoma. 1996 Jan;20(3-4):181-97.

The clinical significance of residual disease in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia as detected by polymerase chain reaction amplification by antigen-receptor gene sequences.

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1
Division of Pediatrics, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, 77030, USA.

Abstract

The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) has been applied to detect occult leukemia cells in children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia who are otherwise considered in complete remission by traditional morphological examination of bone marrow specimens. To determine whether PCR provides unique prognostic information of use for the clinical investigator, we reviewed the 20 clinical studies published to date. From this review, it is evident that discrepancies exist for the detection of residual disease for patients who remain in complete remission and for those who relapse. However, because of the fundamentally different approaches used to apply the PCR method to each of these studies, an entirely different interpretation can be reached when critical technical factors are considered. The combined data from the various studies suggest that a consistent pattern for residual disease disappearance over many months exists for patients who remain in extended complete remission and a pattern of residual disease persistence and reappearance preceding clinical findings exists for the majority of those who ultimately relapse in the bone marrow.

PMID:
8624456
DOI:
10.3109/10428199609051607
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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