Chronic myelomonocytic leukaemia (CMML) is a haematological disease currently classified in the category of myelodysplastic syndromes/myeloproliferative neoplasm (MDS/MPN) because of its dual clinical and biological presentation. The molecular biology of CMML is poorly characterized. We studied a series of 53 CMML samples including 31 cases of myeloproliferative form (MP-CMML) and 22 cases of myelodysplastic forms (MD-CMML) using array-comparative genomic hybridisation (aCGH) and sequencing of 13 candidate genes including ASXL1, CBL, FLT3, IDH1, IDH2, JAK2, KRAS, NPM1, NRAS, PTPN11, RUNX1, TET2 and WT1. Mutations in ASXL1 and in the genes associated with proliferation (CBL, FLT3, PTPN11, NRAS) were mainly found in MP-CMML cases. Mutations of ASXL1 correlated with an evolution toward an acutely transformed state: all CMMLs that progressed to acute phase were mutated and none of the unmutated patients had evolved to acute leukaemia. The overall survival of ASXL1 mutated patients was lower than that of unmutated patients.
© 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.