Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Plasma cell leukemia with an unusual karyotype and prolonged survival with oral alkylating agent therapy


A patient with primary plasma cell leukemia (PCL) is presented, who had an excellent response to high-dose cyclophosphamide and prolonged survival. The sole cytogenetic abnormality detected in the bone marrow was monosomy 18. Although this karyotypic aberration has been previously described in PCL, it generally occurs associated with additional abnormalities. The peripheral blood plasma cells from this patient reacted intracellularly with the monoclonal antibody OKM-1, which binds to myeloid cells at and above the level of myelocytes and to monocytes. This finding supports the idea of a common precursor cell for plasma cells and cells of the myelomonocytic lineage.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Alexanian R (1985) Diagnosis and management of multiple myeloma. In Wiernik PH, Canellos GP, Kyle RA, Schiffer CA (eds) Neoplastic diseases of the blood, vol 1. Churchill Livingstone, New York Edinburgh London Melbourne, pp 529–551

  2. Anderson J, Osgood EE (1965) Acute plasmocytic leukemia responsive to cyclophosphamidel. J Am Med Assoc 193:844–848

  3. Bayard ED, Hall BE (1948) Unusual remission after radiophosphorus therapy in a case of acute plasma cell leukemia. Blood 3:1019–1024

  4. Bichel J, Effersoe P, Gormsen H, Harboe N (1952) Leukemic myelomatosis (Plasma cell leukemia): a review with report of four cases. Acta Radiol 37:196–207

  5. Das KC, Aikat BK (1967) Chromosomal abnormalities in multiple myeloma. Blood 30:738–748

  6. Dewald GW, Kyle RA, Hicks GA, Greipp PR (1985) The clinical significance of cytogenetic studies in 100 patients with multiple myeloma, plasma cell leukemia, or amyloidosis. Blood 66:380–390

  7. Foa P (1904) Sulla produzione cellulaire nell'inflamazione et in altri processi analoghi specialmente in cio che si riferisce alle plasmacellule. Folia haematol 1:166–167

  8. Foon KA, Todd RF III (1986) Immunologic classification of leukemia and lymphoma. Blood 68:1–31

  9. Gailani S, Seon BK, Henderson ES (1977) Plasma cell leukemia: Response to conventional myeloma therapy. J Med 8:403–414

  10. Kyle RA, Noel P (1986) Plasma cell leukemia: Response to therapy in 43 cases. Blood 68:239a

  11. Kyle RA, Maldonado JE, Bayrd ED (1974) Plasma Cell Leukemia. Report of 17 cases. Arch Intern Med 133:813–818

  12. Mitelman F (1983) Catalogue of chromosome abberations in cancer. Cytogenet Cell Genet 36:1–515

  13. Montecucco C, Richardi A, Merlini G, Ascari E (1986) Complete remission in plasma cell leukemia. Br J Haematol 62:525–527

  14. Osanto S, Muller HP, Schuit HRE, Van Nieuwkoop JA, Willemze R (1983) Primary plasma cell leukemia: A case report and a review of the literature. Acta haematol 70:122–129

  15. Paietta E, Goldstein M, Papenhausen P, Ciobanu N, Wiernik PH (1985) Transformation of myeloma into Ph1-negative CML with plasma cell antigens. Am J Hematol 19:289–292

  16. Philip P (1980) Chromosomes of monoclonal gammopathies. Cancer Genet Cytogenet 2:79–86

  17. Philip P, Killman SA (1980) 14q+A consistent marker of plasma cell leukemia. Hereditas 93:185

  18. Pruzanski, W, Platts ME, Ogryzlo MA (1969) Leukemia form of immunocytic dyscrasia (plasma cell leukemia). A study of 10 cases and a review of the literature. Am J Med 47:60–74

  19. Seabright M (1971) A rapid banding technique for human chromosomes. Lancet 2:971–972

  20. Shaw M, Twele TW, Nordquist RF (1974) Plasma cell leukemia: Detailed studies and response to therapy. Cancer 33:619–625

  21. Toma VA, Retief FP, Potgieter GM, Anderson JD (1980) Plasma cell leukemia: diagnostic problems in our experience with 11 cases. Acta haematol 63:136–145

  22. Warner NL, Moore MAS, Metcalf D (1969) A transplantable myelomonocytic leukemia in BALB/c mice: cytology, karyotype and muramidase content. J Natl Cancer Inst 43:963–982

  23. Woodruff RK, Mapas JS, Paxton AM, Lister TA (1978) Plasma cell leukemia (PCL): a report on 15 patients. Blood 52:839–845

  24. Wright SD, Rao PE, Van Vorrhis WC, Craigmyle LS, Iida K, Talle MA, Westberg EF, Goldstein G, Silverstein SC (1983) Indentification of the C3bi receptor of human leukocytes and macrophages by using monoclonal antibodies. Proc Natl Acad Sci (USA) 80:5699–5703

  25. Wurster-Hill DH, McIntyre OR, Cornwell GG, Maurer LH (1983) Marker chromosome 14 in multiple myeloma and plasma-cell leukemia. Lancet II:1031

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to P. H. Wiernik.

Additional information

Supported in part by grant from the Chemotherapy Foundation

Supported in part by a grant from the Stratton Foundation

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Wiernik, P.H., Sciortino, D., Paietta, E. et al. Plasma cell leukemia with an unusual karyotype and prolonged survival with oral alkylating agent therapy. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol 113, 576–578 (1987). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00390869

Download citation

Key words

  • Plasma cell leukemia
  • Cytogenetics
  • Response to treatment