Immunophenotypic Modulation of the Blast Cells in Childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Minimal Residual Disease Detection.Folia Med (Plovdiv). 2016 03 01; 58(1):28-35.FM
Early clearance of leukemic cells during induction therapy of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a basis for treatment optimization. Currently, the most widely used methods for the detection of minute residual malignant cells in the bone marrow and/or peripheral blood, minimal residual disease (MRD), are PCR and flow cytometry (FCM). Immunophenotypic modulation (IM) is a well known factor that can hamper the accurate FCM analysis.
To report the IM detected by 8-color FCM during the BFM-type remission induction in 24 consecutive MRD-positive samples of children with B-cell precursor ALL and the possible implications for MRD detection.
PATIENTS AND METHODS
Between 2010 and 2012 we prospectively followed up the MRD on days 15 and 33 of induction treatment in bone marrow (BM) samples and on day 8 in peripheral blood (PB). The IM was assessed by comparative analyses of the changes in the mean fluorescence intensity of 7 highly relevant antigens expressed by the leukemic cells and normal B-lymphocytes.
IM occurred, to different extents, in all analyzed day 15 BM and in most day 33 BM samples. Statistically significant changes in the MFI-levels of four CDs expressed by the leukemic blasts were observed: downmodulation of CD10, CD19 and CD34 and upmodulation of CD20. No changes in the expression of CD38, CD58 and CD45 were noticed.
Measuring the MRD by standardized 8-color flow cytometry helps improve the monitoring of the disease, leading to better therapeutic results. However, the IM of the different antigens expressed by the leukemic blasts should be taken into consideration and cautiously analyzed.