The initial features, response to therapy, complications, cause of death, and prognostic factors of 171 consecutive children with ANLL are described and compated to historical data for adults with ANLL and for children with ALL. Major differences between children and adults with ANLL include a higher frequency of CNS leukemia and a lower frequency of early deaths in the children. The most important differences between children with ANLL and ALL are the absence of a peak age of incidence in ANLL and the far better response to therapy in ALL. Among features present at 100,000/mm3 or above, and no palpable hepatomegaly had significantly longer survivals, while patients with platelet counts below 10,000/mm3 had significantly shorter survivals. The frequency and duration of remission were significantly better with three protocols used since 1968 than previously. However, even with these protocols, the results were far from satisfactory, with a complete remission frequency of 66%, a median duration of hematological remission of 6 months, and a median duration of survival of 10 months. The striking contrast of these results in childhood ANLL with current results in childhood ALL underscores the need for novel, imaginative therapeutic approaches for ANLL.