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Lowl-selectin (CD62L) expression in acute myeloid leukemia correlates with a bad cytogenetic risk

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Graf M, Reif S, Hecht K, Pelka-Fleischer R, Pfister K, Nuessler V, Schmetzer H. Lowl-selectin (CD62L) expression in acute myeloid leukemia correlates with a bad cytogenetic risk.

Eur J Haematol 2003: 71: 366–376. © Blackwell Munksgaard 2003. Abstract: Objectives:

Interactions between hemopoietic cells and the stromal microenvironment or immunoreactive cells are mediated by specific cell surface receptors. The expression of those molecules may alter the adhesive qualities (mobility and homing) as well as immune response behavior of leukemic blasts.l-Selectin (CD62L) is suggested to play a role in the redistribution and homing of hemopoietic progenitor cells to the bone marrow (BM). Down-regulation ofl-selectin is responsible for mobilization of blasts from the BM into the circulation and ligation ofl-selectin stimulates proliferation of progenitor cells. This could have an influence on the process of leukemia. Method:

We have studied the expression ofl-selectin on mononuclear BM cells of 36 acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients at first diagnosis by FACS analysis using a directly fluorescein isothiocyanate conjugated antibody (clone DRE G56). Results:

On average the patients presented with 88% blasts in the BM. The expression tended to be higher in primary (p) AML compared with secondary (s) AML.l-Selectin was very heterogenously expressed in all FAB groups. Highest expression was found in cases with AML-M4 with four of nine cases presenting with an inv(16) karyotype. Separating our patient cohort in cytogenetic risk groups we could detect a significantly higher expression ofl-selectin in cases with a ‘good risk’ karyotype and a very low expression in cases with a ‘bad risk’ karyotype (P = 0.037). Comparing patients who achieved remission after double induction therapy (responders) with patients who showed persisting disease (non-responders) we found a higher percentage ofl-selectin+ cases or cells in the responder group than in the non-responder group, although the differences were not significant because of only five cases in the ‘non-responder’ group. Evaluating cut-off points greatest differences in relapse-free survival probabilities were found in patients who presented with ≥30%l-selectin+ BM cells compared with cases with <30%: 86% of cases with ≥30%l-selectin+ cells were still in remission after a mean follow up time of only 8 months compared with only 46% in the group with <30%l-selectin+ cells. Conclusions:

We can conclude that (i) expression ofl-selectin on AML blasts is variable. This reveals the great diversitiy of immunophenotypes in AML and might contribute to identify individual blast phenotypes in order to detect minimal residual disease in remission. (ii) Lowl-selectin expression correlates with a bad cytogenetic risk, with a lower probability to achieve remission and with a shorter relapse-free survival time. This might reflect a decreased homing of the blasts to the BM as well as an impaired cytotoxic T-cell reaction against leukemic cells. The expression ofl-selectin on leukemic blasts might be influenced by different cytokine therapies (e.g. with interferon alpha) and this might result in an altered hematologic reconstitution after cytotoxic therapies as well as in an altered immunologic recognition of blasts.
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Keywords: acute myeloid leukemia; adhesion molecules; immunophenotyping; l-selectin; prognosis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Medical Department III, Klinikum Grosshadern, University of Munich, Munich, Germany 2: Max Delbrueck Center for Molecular Medicine, University of Berlin, Berlin 3: Department for Surgery, University of Regensburg, Regensburg

Publication date: November 1, 2003

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