Clonal hematopoiesis (CH) defines a population of hematopoietic cells with one or more somatic mutations/copy number alterations that can expand with time and under positive clonal selection pressures. The term CH of indeterminate potential (CHIP) operationally describes somatic mutations in leukemia-associated driver genes in hematopoietic stem cells with variant allele frequencies (VAF) of ≥ 2%, without evidence for an underlying hematological malignancy. Risk factors for CHIP include aging, inflammation, male sex, cigarette smoking, history of cancer and cancer treatments, germline predisposition states, among others. CHIP is a premalignant condition, with a low but definite risk of hematologic malignancies and is associated with increased all-cause mortality, largely due to cardiovascular disease and associated endothelial dysfunction. Here we review recent advances in CHIP, including diagnostic, prognostic, and potential therapeutic strategies.
Keywords: Aging; Clonal hematopoiesis; Clonal hematopoiesis of indeterminate significance; Hematological malignancy.
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