Friday, May 18, 2012

DNA sequencing found to be better than flow cytometry in predicting cancer relapse

In a recent study Scientists at  University of Washington, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, University of Virginia,  University of California and  Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have found that  high-throughput sequencing could improve the diagnosis and post-treatment monitoring of leukemia. The sequencing-based method is more sensitive than flow cytometry and cheaper  and faster than the quantitative real-time PCR. They used high throughput sequencing (HTS)  to the diagnosis of T-lineage acute lymphoblastic leukemia/lymphoma. 43 paired patient samples were used for assessing
minimal residual disease (MRD) at day 29 after treatment. Abnormal T lymphoblast identification by multiparametric flow cytometry was concurrently performed for comparison. They  found that  HTS not only identified clonality at diagnosis in most cases (27 to 31 of 43) but also detected subsequent minimal residual disease.  HTS identified minimal residual disease that was not detected by flow cytometry in a subset of cases (25 of 35 HTS compared with 13 of 35, respectively), which highlights the potential of this technology to define lower detection thresholds for MRD that could affect clinical treatment decisions. Thus, next-generation sequencing of lymphoid receptor gene repertoire may improve clinical diagnosis and subsequent minimal residual disease monitoring of lymphoproliferative disorders.

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