SAMHD1 single nucleotide polymorphisms impact outcome in children with newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia

Blood Adv. 2023 Jun 13;7(11):2538-2550. doi: 10.1182/bloodadvances.2022009088.


Cytarabine arabinoside (Ara-C) has been the cornerstone of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) chemotherapy for decades. After cellular uptake, it is phosphorylated into its active triphosphate form (Ara-CTP), which primarily exerts its cytotoxic effects by inhibiting DNA synthesis in proliferating cells. Interpatient variation in the enzymes involved in the Ara-C metabolic pathway has been shown to affect intracellular abundance of Ara-CTP and, thus, its therapeutic benefit. Recently, SAMHD1 (SAM and HD domain-containing deoxynucleoside triphosphate triphosphohydrolase 1) has emerged to play a role in Ara-CTP inactivation, development of drug resistance, and, consequently, clinical response in AML. Despite this, the impact of genetic variations in SAMHD1 on outcome in AML has not been investigated in depth. In this study, we evaluated 25 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within the SAMHD1 gene for association with clinical outcome in 400 pediatric patients with newly diagnosed AML from 2 clinical trials, AML02 and AML08. Three SNPs, rs1291128, rs1291141, and rs7265241 located in the 3' region of SAMHD1 were significantly associated with at least 1 clinical outcome: minimal residual disease after induction I, event-free survival (EFS), or overall survival (OS) in the 2 cohorts. In an independent cohort of patients from the COG-AAML1031 trial (n = 854), rs7265241 A>G remained significantly associated with EFS and OS. In multivariable analysis, all the SNPs remained independent predictors of clinical outcome. These results highlight the relevance of the SAMHD1 pharmacogenomics in context of response to Ara-C in AML and warrants the need for further validation in expanded patient cohorts.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Arabinofuranosylcytosine Triphosphate / metabolism
  • Arabinofuranosylcytosine Triphosphate / therapeutic use
  • Child
  • Cytarabine / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Myeloid, Acute* / diagnosis
  • Leukemia, Myeloid, Acute* / drug therapy
  • Leukemia, Myeloid, Acute* / genetics
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide
  • SAM Domain and HD Domain-Containing Protein 1* / genetics


  • Arabinofuranosylcytosine Triphosphate
  • Cytarabine
  • SAM Domain and HD Domain-Containing Protein 1
  • SAMHD1 protein, human
  • triphosphoric acid