Myelodysplasia and acute megakaryoblastic leukemia in Down's syndrome

Leuk Res. 1994 Mar;18(3):163-71. doi: 10.1016/0145-2126(94)90111-2.


In this report we describe the clinical and hematologic features of 23 cases of myelodysplasia (MDS) or acute megakaryoblastic leukemia (AMKL) occurring in Down's syndrome. MDS was characterized by thrombocytopenia, abnormal megakaryocytopoiesis, megakaryoblasts (< 30%) in the marrow and abnormal karyotype, the most common of which was trisomy 8, found in 7/15 patients with MDS. Three of five patients achieved a complete remission with low dose cytosine arabinoside, vincristine and retinyl palmitate. The high cure rate and the distinctive features of the leukemic process in these cases suggest that this type of MDS and AMKL are unique to patients with Down's syndrome.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Bone Marrow / pathology
  • Child
  • Down Syndrome / complications*
  • Female
  • Hematopoiesis
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Megakaryoblastic, Acute / complications*
  • Leukemia, Megakaryoblastic, Acute / drug therapy
  • Leukemia, Megakaryoblastic, Acute / pathology
  • Male
  • Megakaryocytes / pathology
  • Myelodysplastic Syndromes / complications*
  • Myelodysplastic Syndromes / drug therapy
  • Myelodysplastic Syndromes / pathology
  • Remission Induction