Myeloperoxidase gene expression in infant leukemia: A pediatric oncology group study

Carlos S. Alvarado, Garth E. Austin, Michael J. Borowitz, Jonathan J. Shuster, Andrew J. Carroll, Eric D. Austin, Muxiang Zhou, Sherif R. Zaki, Jeanette Pullen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


A high incidence of co-expression of myeloid-associated antigens in infant B-precursor Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (B-ALL) has been reported, but the significance of this finding is uncertain. To further assess myeloid differentiation and its prognostic significance in this disease, we investigated the frequency of myeloperoxidase (MPO) gene expression in the blast cells from 43 infants with B-ALL registered in a Pediatric Oncology Group (POG) Pilot Study for Treatment of Infant ALL, utilizing a molecular probe for detection of MPO messenger RNA (mRNA) by Northern blot hybridization and a monoclonal antibody to detect MPO-protein by immunohistochemical staining. Sufficient RNA for Northern blot was extracted from 32 bone marrow or blood samples. In two cases, MPO mRNA was determined by a reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction assay and was negative in both cases. MPO-specific transcripts (MPO+) were present in 19 of 34 (56%) samples analyzed. Immunoreactive MPO protein was positive in 13 of the 20 (65%) patients studied. No correlation was found between MPO gene expression and clinical or laboratory features, karyotypic patterns or clinical outcome. The high frequency of MPO gene expression demonstrated in this study suggests that leukemogenic events in many cases of infant B-ALL appear to involve a pluripotent stem cell not yet fully committed to lymphoid differentiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-160
Number of pages16
JournalLeukemia and Lymphoma
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Infant ALL
  • MPO gene expression
  • MPO mRNA
  • MPO protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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