Minimal residual disease in childhood B Lymphoblastic Leukemia and its correlation with other risk factors

  • Fatima Meraj
  • Naeem Jabbar
  • Kishwer Nadeem
  • Momal Taimoor
  • Neelum Mansoor
Keywords: B-lymphoblastic leukemia, Central nervous system, Flow cytometry, Minimal residual disease


Objective: To determine frequency of post induction and post consolidation minimal residual disease (MRD) in pediatric B-lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL) patients and its association with clinical risk factors.

Methods: This is a retrospective, cross sectional study carried out at the Indus Hospital on paediatric patients (1-17 years) was performed from May 2015 to January 2018. On day 35, MRD testing was done on bone marrow aspirate using 4 color flow cytometer with 0.01% cut off. Positive cases were retested at post consolidation. Data was collected for demographics, total leukocyte count (TLC), central nervous system status (CNS), Cytogenetics for BCR-ABL, MLL, TEL-AML by FISH and prophase response then analyzed in association to MRD status.

Results: Out of 362 patients, 133 (37%) were post induction MRD positive, with no statistically significant association to age, gender, TLC, CNS status, prophase response, BCR-ABL and TEL-AML1. However, MLL showed closely significant association (p-value=0.05). Post consolidation, 49 (44%) were MRD positive; age, National cancer institute (NCI) risk groups and CNS status showed statistical significance (p-value <0.05).

Conclusion: Despite high frequency of MRD positivity, significant association is not observed between post induction MRD and risk factors. However, post consolidation MRD has a significant association with NCI risk groups, age and CNS status.


How to cite this:
Meraj F, Jabbar N, Nadeem K, Taimoor M, Mansoor N. Minimal residual disease in childhood B Lymphoblastic Leukemia and its correlation with other risk factors. Pak J Med Sci. Special Supplement ICON 2020. 2020;36(1):S20-S26.  doi:

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