Recent reports described the NUP98-NSD1 fusion as an adverse prognostic marker for acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) and PRDM16 (also known as MEL1) as the representative overexpressed gene in patients harbouring NUP98-NSD1 fusion. PRDM16 gene expression levels were measured via real-time polymerase chain reaction in 369 paediatric patients with de novo AML, of whom 84 (23%) exhibited PRDM16 overexpression (PRDM16/ABL1 ratio ≥0·010). The frequencies of patients with high or low PRDM16 expression differed widely with respect to each genetic alteration, as follows: t(8;21), 4% vs. 96%, P <0·001; inv(16), 0% vs. 100%, P <0·001; KMT2A (also termed MLL)- partial tandem duplication, 100% vs. 0%, P <0·001; NUP98-NSD1, 100% vs. 0%, P <0·001. The overall survival (OS) and event-free survival (EFS) among PRDM16-overexpressing patients were significantly worse than in patients with low PRDM16 expression (3-year OS: 51% vs. 81%, P <0·001, 3-year EFS: 32% vs. 64%, P <0·001) irrespective of other cytogenetic alterations except for NPM1. PRDM16 gene expression was particularly useful for stratifying FLT3-internal tandem duplication-positive AML patients (3-year OS: high = 30% vs. low = 70%, P <0·001). PRDM16 overexpression was highly recurrent in de novo paediatric AML patients with high/intermediate-risk cytogenetic profiles and was independently associated with an adverse outcome.
- Gene expression
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