Chracterisation of Chromosomal Aberrations in Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia Patients Attending the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka

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Okuku, Pauline
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University of Zambia
Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia is a malignant disease that evolves as a result of mutation of lymphoid precursor cells. The World Health Organization recognizes that the genetic analysis of leukaemia has prognostic and therapeutic implications. Cytogenetic and molecular studies provide important prognostic information and are becoming important in determining the appropriate treatment protocol. The aim of this study was to characterise chromosomal aberrations in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia patients attending University Teaching Hospital. Methodology: This descriptive study was undertaken at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka, Zambia in which blood samples from patients with ALL were screened for translocations that commonly occur in ALL. The patients were between the ages of 1 and 72. The children (defined in this study as patients of ages 15years and below) were 13/19(68%) between the ages 1.6 and 15years (mean age = 9years). Males in this category were 6/13(46%) and the females were 7/13(54%). The adults in this study were 6/19(32%), they were between ages of 16 and 72years (median age=26.5years). In this category, males were 5/6(83%) and one female. We detected fusion gene productions in 3 of the 19 participants. Two of the patients had the t(9:22) translocation while one had the t(1:19) translocation. Other translocations screened, t(11;23)/MLL-AF4 and t(12;21)/ETV6/RUNX1)were not detected. There will be need to carry out this study on a larger scale nationwide in order to determine the type and frequency of chromosomal aberrations among acute lymphoblastic leukaemia patients in Zambia. Based on the above, recommendation, treatment guideline specific for Zambian population can therefore be established.
Master of Science in Pathology (Haematology)
Lymphoblastic Leukemia , Leukemia--physiopathology