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Two Lancet Papers Offer Overviews of Leukemia

Pathophysiology, diagnosis, treatment factors for acute lymphoblastic and chronic lymphocytic covered

FRIDAY, March 21 (HealthDay News) -- Two types of leukemia that predominantly strike at the opposite ends of the age spectrum -- acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which peaks in prevalence between the ages of 2 and 5 years, and chronic lymphocytic leukemia, which is typically diagnosed in patients' 70s -- are the subject of overviews in the March 22 issue of The Lancet.

Ching-Hon Pui, M.D., of the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., and colleagues write that acute lymphoblastic leukemia patients will likely soon begin benefiting from treatment individualized to their genetic makeup and that of their malignant cells.

In the other article, Guillermo Dighiero, M.D., of the Institut Pasteur de Montevideo in Uruguay, and Terry J. Hamblin, of the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom, write that not only has major progress been made in identification of molecular and cellular markers that could help predict disease progression, a host of new treatments are in the pipeline or already available.

"Advances in molecular biology have enhanced our understanding of the pathophysiology of the disease and, together with development of new therapeutic agents, have made management of chronic lymphocytic leukemia more rational and more effective than previously," Dighiero and colleagues write.

Pui and a co-author report financial relationships with several pharmaceutical companies; Hamblin and Dighiero report financial relationships with Roche Pharmaceuticals and Hamblin receives grant funding from Tenovus.

Abstract - Pui
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Abstract - Dighiero
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