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ASH partners with AMEH and National Cancer Institute to improve diagnosis of leukemia in Mexico
Date:4/8/2011

(MEXICO CITY, April 8, 2011) A workshop being held today will serve as the launch of a unique project that unites the American Society of Hematology (ASH), the Agrupacin Mexicana para el Estudio de la Hematologa (AMEH), and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in pursuit of a common goal: improving the care of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). The key to successfully treating AML, a type of blood cancer characterized by rapid growth of abnormal white blood cells, is to look for changes in the chromosomes of the leukemia cells a process known as cytogenetic analysis. In 2009, leaders of AMEH approached ASH with concerns that the cytogenetic testing available to Mexican hematologists was not sufficiently accurate to properly diagnose and treat patients with AML. ASH enlisted the help of NCI's Office of Latin American Cancer Program Development (OLACPD), which agreed to provide its expertise on cytogenetic testing as part of a pilot program to standardize and improve the quality of testing in these labs. After a competitive selection process, four laboratories two in Mexico City, one in Guadalajara, and one in Morelia were chosen to participate. Oversight of the two-year project will be provided by a steering committee composed of scientists representing ASH, AMEH, and NCI.

"The recent scientific literature has underscored the importance of understanding the types of chromosomal abnormalities present in patients with AML in order to tailor their treatments to be most effective," said David Gmez Almaguer, MD, PhD, President of AMEH and member of the steering committee. "We believe that by raising the standards of cytogenetic testing in these laboratories, this program will ultimately result in better outcomes for patients with AML, which is the most common type of acute leukemia in adults as well as one of the more common forms of leukemia in children."

Today's workshop will include presentations about the standardization protocol an
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Contact: Julia Garca Velzquez
julia.velazquez@fleishman.com
55-525-540-6031
American Society of Hematology
Source:Eurekalert

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