Acute leukemias (AL) of ambiguous lineage are a heterogeneous group of high-risk leukemias characterized by co-expression of myeloid and lymphoid markers. In this study, we identified a distinct subgroup of immature acute leukemias characterized by a broadly variable phenotype, covering acute myeloid leukemia (AML M0 or M1), T/myeloid mixed phenotype acute leukemia (T/M MPAL), and early T-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ETP-ALL). Rearrangements at 14q32/BCL11B are the cytogenetic hallmark of this entity. In our screening of 915 hematological malignancies, there were 202 AML and 333 T-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (T-ALL) (58 ETP, 178 non-ETP, 8 T/M MPAL, 89 not otherwise specified). We identified 20 cases of immature leukemias (4% of AML and 3,6% of T-ALL) harbouring four types of 14q32/BCL11B translocations: t(2,14)(q22.3;q32) (n=7), t(6;14)(q25.3;q32) (n=9), t(7;14)(q21.2;q32) (n=2) and t(8;14)(q24.2;q32) (n=2). The t(2;14) produced a ZEB2-BCL11B fusion transcript, while the other three rearrangements displaced transcriptionally active enhancer sequences close to BCL11B without producing fusion genes. All translocations resulted in the activation of BCL11B, a regulator of T-cell differentiation associated with transcriptional corepressor complexes in mammalian cells. The expression of BCL11B behaved as a disease biomarker, which was present at diagnosis but not in remission. Deregulation of BCL11B co-occurred with variants at FLT3 and at epigenetic modulators, most frequently DNMT3A, TET2 and/or WT1 gene. Transcriptome analysis identified a specific expression signature, with significant downregulation of BCL11B targets, and clearly separating BCL11B positive AL from AML, T-ALL, and ETP-ALL. Remarkably, ex-vivo drug sensitivity profile identified a panel of compounds with effective antileukemic activity.

14q32 rearrangements deregulating BCL11B mark a distinct subgroup of T and myeloid immature acute leukemia

Danika Di Giacomo;Roberta La Starza;Paolo Gorello;Fabrizia Pellanera;Silvia Arniani;Caterina Matteucci;Cristina Mecucci
2021

Abstract

Acute leukemias (AL) of ambiguous lineage are a heterogeneous group of high-risk leukemias characterized by co-expression of myeloid and lymphoid markers. In this study, we identified a distinct subgroup of immature acute leukemias characterized by a broadly variable phenotype, covering acute myeloid leukemia (AML M0 or M1), T/myeloid mixed phenotype acute leukemia (T/M MPAL), and early T-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ETP-ALL). Rearrangements at 14q32/BCL11B are the cytogenetic hallmark of this entity. In our screening of 915 hematological malignancies, there were 202 AML and 333 T-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (T-ALL) (58 ETP, 178 non-ETP, 8 T/M MPAL, 89 not otherwise specified). We identified 20 cases of immature leukemias (4% of AML and 3,6% of T-ALL) harbouring four types of 14q32/BCL11B translocations: t(2,14)(q22.3;q32) (n=7), t(6;14)(q25.3;q32) (n=9), t(7;14)(q21.2;q32) (n=2) and t(8;14)(q24.2;q32) (n=2). The t(2;14) produced a ZEB2-BCL11B fusion transcript, while the other three rearrangements displaced transcriptionally active enhancer sequences close to BCL11B without producing fusion genes. All translocations resulted in the activation of BCL11B, a regulator of T-cell differentiation associated with transcriptional corepressor complexes in mammalian cells. The expression of BCL11B behaved as a disease biomarker, which was present at diagnosis but not in remission. Deregulation of BCL11B co-occurred with variants at FLT3 and at epigenetic modulators, most frequently DNMT3A, TET2 and/or WT1 gene. Transcriptome analysis identified a specific expression signature, with significant downregulation of BCL11B targets, and clearly separating BCL11B positive AL from AML, T-ALL, and ETP-ALL. Remarkably, ex-vivo drug sensitivity profile identified a panel of compounds with effective antileukemic activity.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11391/1494445
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