Prognostic significance of CD20 expression in childhood B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia

Blood. 2006 Nov 15;108(10):3302-4. doi: 10.1182/blood-2006-04-016709. Epub 2006 Aug 8.


CD20 expression is associated with inferior survival in adults with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). We analyzed the prognostic impact of CD20 expression in 353 children with B-cell precursor ALL treated in 3 consecutive St Jude Total Therapy studies. CD20 expression (> 20%) was found in 169 patients (48%) and was more frequent in patients between 1 and 10 years of age than in those younger than 1 or older than 10 years (P = .001). None of 14 patients with MLL-AF4 expressed CD20. There was no association between CD20 expression and E2A-PBX, TEL-AML1, ploidy, white blood cell count at diagnosis, or sex. In contrast to the experience in adult ALL, our patients with CD20 expression tended to have a better treatment outcome than those without the expression: 5-year event-free survival 84% +/- 2.9% versus 78% +/- 3.1% (P = .08). These data suggest that CD20 expression is not associated with inferior outcome in pediatric patients treated with contemporary regimens.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Antigens, CD20 / analysis*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Precursor B-Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / diagnosis*
  • Precursor B-Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / mortality
  • Precursor Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / diagnosis*
  • Precursor Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / mortality
  • Predictive Value of Tests*
  • Prognosis
  • Recurrence


  • Antigens, CD20