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Transient Myeloproliferative Disorder and Acute Myeloid Leukemia in Down Syndrome
An Immunophenotypic Analysis

Nitin J. Karandikar MD, PhD, Deborah B. Aquino MD, Robert W. McKenna MD, Steven H. Kroft MD
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1309/XREF-C9T2-6U0A-4EDT 204-210 First published online: 1 August 2001


Immunophenotypic analysis of transient myeloproliferative disorder (TMD) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML) using multiparameter flow cytometry might provide insight into their relationship. We retrospectively analyzed the expression of multiple lymphoid, myelomonocytic, and megakaryocytic antigens on blast proliferations in 18 patients with Down syndrome (DS; AML, 9; TMD, 9). The AMLs and TMDs shared several immunophenotypic characteristics. Blasts in all expressed CD45, CD38, and CD33; most AMLs and all TMDs were CD36+; and the majority expressed CD41 and CD61, suggesting megakaryocytic differentiation. The majority of cases were CD34+, CD14−, and CD64−. There was aberrant expression of the T-cell–associated antigen CD7 in most AMLs and TMDs. CD56 was expressed aberrantly in 5 AMLs and 7 TMDs. The major difference between the disorders was the pattern of expression of myeloid markers CD11b and CD13; each was expressed in 8 AMLs but only 2 TMDs. Blasts were HLA-DR–positive in 3 AMLs vs 7 TMDs. Blasts in TMD and AML in DS have a characteristic immunophenotype distinct from AML in other settings. The immunophenotypic similarities suggest a biologic relationship between the disorders; however, distinct immunophenotypic differences also were observed.

Key Words:
  • Transient myeloproliferative disorder
  • TMD
  • Leukemia
  • AML
  • Down syndrome
  • Immunophenotype
  • Flow cytometry