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Leukemia, February 2017
Hussein K et al.  


Pediatric chronic myeloid leukemia (ped-CML) is rare and ped-CML with fibre accumulation in the bone marrow (MF) is thought to be even rarer. In adults (ad-CML), fibrosis represents an adverse prognostic factor. So far, the pro-fibrotic changes in the bone marrow microenvironment have not been investigated in detail in ped-CML. From a total of 66 ped-CML in chronic phase, biopsies were analysable and 10 had MF1/2 (MF1, n=8/10; MF2, n=2/10). We randomly selected 16 ped-CML and 16 ad-CML cases with and without fibrosis (each n=8) as well as 18 non-neoplastic controls. Bone marrow samples were analysed with a real-time PCR-based assay (including 127 genes for pediatric cases) and by immunohistochemistry. We found increased expression of megakaryocytic genes in ped-CML. The number of megakaryocytes and pro-platelets are increased in CML patients but the most significant increase was noted for ped-CML-MF1/2. Anti-fibrotic MMP9 expression was lower in children than in adults. Cell mobilisation-related CXCL12 was decreased in young and adult patients with CML but not the corresponding receptor CXCR4. In summary, fibre accumulation in ped-CML-MF1/2 is associated with increased megakaryocytic proliferation and increased interstitial pro-platelet deposition. Deregulated expression of matrix modulating factors shifts the bone marrow microenvironment towards fibrosis.