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Leukemia. 1996 Jun;10(6):946-51.

De novo AML with dysplastic hematopoiesis: cytogenetic and prognostic significance.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany.


Dysplastic hematopoiesis is the morphological hallmark of myelodysplastic syndromes. Dysplastic features in one or more lineages are also found frequently in bone marrow aspirates from patients with de novo AML and have been associated with an unfavorable prognosis. We asked whether dyshematopoiesis is an independent prognostic factor or an indicator of unrecognized secondary leukemia, identified by characteristic chromosomal abnormalities. Bone marrow aspirates from 102 patients with newly diagnosed AML were analyzed. Morphological analysis was obtained in all patients, flow cytometric analysis in 96 and successful cytogenetic analysis in 65 bone marrow aspirates. Dysgranulopoiesis (DysG) was found in 55, dysmegakaryopoiesis (DysM) in 32 and dyserythropoiesis (DysE) in 23 patients. Decreased side scatter signals of neutrophils in the flow cytometric analysis (DysS) were detected in 32 patients. DysG and DysS showed a highly significant correlation (P = 0.0005). DysG was an adverse negative prognostic factor for remission rate and event-free survival (P = 0.04, P = 0.02). An unfavorable karyotype was associated with a significantly lower chance for event-free survival (P = 0.002). The incidence of an unfavorable karyotype was significantly higher in patients with DysG (P = 0.01), DysM (P = 0.02) and DysS (P = 0.01). In patients with an unfavorable karyotype, dysplasia had no additional prognostic influence, however, in patients with a normal, favorable or prognostically uncertain karyotype DysG remained a predictor of lower remission rate (P = 0.03). We conclude that dysgranulopoiesis, dysmegakaryopoiesis and decreased side scatter signals of neutrophils are indicators of secondary leukemias in bone marrow aspirates from patients with de novo AML.

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