BMI-1 is Highly Expressed in M0-Subtype Acute Myeloid Leukemia


Recent studies have suggested that one of the polycomb group genes,BMI- 1, has an important role in the maintenance of normal and leukemic stem cells by repressing theINK4a/ARF locus. Here, we quantitatively examinedBMI- 1 expression level in samples from patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and other hematologic malignancies. Moderate to highBMI- 1 expression was detected in AML patients, and theBMI- 1 expression levels in AML samples were significantly higher than in normal bone marrow controls(P =.0011). Specimens of French-American-British classification subtype M0 showed higher relative expression of the BMI-1 transcript (median, 390.2 x 10-3) than the other subtypes (median, 139.0 x 10-3)(P <.0001). Leukemia other than AML showed low to moderate expression. INK4a-ARF transcript expression tended to be inverse proportion to that of BMI-1. In an M0 patient with a high BMI-1 transcript level, the INK4a-ARF transcript level fell promptly and maintained a low value after the patient achieved complete remission. These results indicated that a subgroup of M0 patients has a high expression level of polycomb group geneBMI- 1, which may contribute to leukemogenesis.

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Correspondence to Masashi Sawa or Kazuhito Yamamoto or Toshiya Yokozawa or Hitoshi Kiyoi or Asahi Hishida or Tomohiro Kajiguchi or Masao Seto or Akio Kohno or Kunio Kitamura or Yoshie Itoh or Norio Asou or Nobuyuki Hamajima or Nobuhiko Emi or Tomoki Naoe.

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Sawa, M., Yamamoto, K., Yokozawa, T. et al. BMI-1 is Highly Expressed in M0-Subtype Acute Myeloid Leukemia. Int J Hematol 82, 42–47 (2005).

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Key words

  • BMI-1
  • Leukemia
  • M0