Recent studies revealed that a substantial proportion of patients with high-risk B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (BCP-ALL) harbor fusions involving tyrosine kinase and cytokine receptors, such as ABL1, PDGFRB, JAK2 and CRLF2, which are targeted by tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs). In the present study, transcriptome analysis or multiplex reverse transcriptase–PCR analysis of 373 BCP-ALL patients without recurrent genetic abnormalities identified 29 patients with kinase fusions. Clinically, male predominance (male/female: 22/7), older age at onset (mean age at onset: 8.8 years) and a high white blood cell count at diagnosis (mean: 94 200/μl) reflected the predominance of National Cancer Institute high-risk (NCI-HR) patients (NCI-standard risk/HR: 8/21). Genetic analysis identified three patients with ABL1 rearrangements, eight with PDGFRB rearrangements, two with JAK2 rearrangements, three with IgH-EPOR and one with NCOR1-LYN. Of the 14 patients with CRLF2 rearrangements, two harbored IgH-EPOR and PDGFRB rearrangements. IKZF1 deletion was present in 16 of the 22 patients. The 5-year event-free and overall survival rates were 48.6 ± 9.7% and 73.5 ± 8.6%, respectively. The outcome was not satisfactory without sophisticated minimal residual disease-based stratification. Furthermore, the efficacy of TKIs combined with conventional chemotherapy without allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in this cohort should be determined.
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