Cell mediated inhibition of erythropoiesis and megaloblastic anemia in T-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia

Cancer. 1983 Feb 15;51(4):631-6. doi: 10.1002/1097-0142(19830215)51:4<631::aid-cncr2820510415>3.0.co;2-e.


A patient with T-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia presented with severe megaloblastic anemia with normal serum folic acid and cobalamin concentrations. BFU-E could not be cultured from the patient's peripheral blood unless T-lymphocytes were removed by E-rosette formation. Inhibitory activity by the patient's T-cells was restricted to autologous BFU-E. After cyclic chemotherapy the anemia and megaloblastic changes resolved, peripheral blood BFU-E could be cultured from unfractionated peripheral blood and the T-cell inhibitory activity could no longer be demonstrated. The anemia in this patient is probably due to the neoplastic expansion of a suppressor T-lymphocyte population.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anemia, Macrocytic / etiology*
  • Anemia, Megaloblastic / etiology*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Colony-Forming Units Assay
  • Erythropoiesis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Lymphoid / drug therapy
  • Leukemia, Lymphoid / immunology*
  • Rosette Formation
  • T-Lymphocytes*


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antineoplastic Agents