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Comprehensive Look at Rare Leukemia Finds Relatively Few Genetic Changes Launch Disease
Date:7/27/2009

The study also reports cryptic chromosomal translocations in 14 percent of patients in this study who, based on standard testing, appeared to lack such re-arrangements. Cryptic translocations are too small to be detected by conventional testing. Downing said the analysis identified focal CNAs adjacent to genes previously linked to chromosomal translocations. Those genes are MLL, MLLT4, NUP98 and NSD1. These data suggest that chromosomal translocations are more frequent in AML than was previously thought. Identifying the abnormality during diagnostic testing will require additional, more sophisticated screening, Downing said.

Other authors of this paper are Charles Mullighan, Masami Ishii, Xiaoping Su, Jinjun Cheng, Jing Ma, Ramapriya Ganti, Zhongling Cai, Salil Goorha, Stanley Pounds, Xueyuan Cao, Caroline Obert, Jianling Armstrong, Guangchun Song, Raul Ribeiro, Jeffrey Rubnitz, Susana Raimondi and Sheila Shurtleff, all of St. Jude; and Jinghui Zhang, of the Center for Biomedical Informatics and Information Technology, National Cancer Institute.

This work was supported in part by the National Cancer Institute, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia, and ALSAC.

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is internationally recognized for its pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases. Founded by late entertainer Danny Thomas and based in Memphis, Tenn., St. Jude freely shares its discoveries with scientific and medical communities around the world. No family ever pays for treatments not covered by insurance, and families without insurance are never asked to pay. St. Jude is financially supported by ALSAC, its fundraising organization. For more information, please visit

SOURCE St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
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