The Bollum Enzyme in Leukemia and Lymphoma Cells: The First Decade

  • Ronald McCaffrey
  • Richard Bell
  • Anne Lillquist
  • George Wright
  • Earl Baril
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 145)


It is now almost a decade since the original report of the presence of the Bollum enzyme (terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase, TdT) in leukemia cells1. That discovery was a fortuitous event which occurred in the course of experiments characterizing what at first appeared to be tumor virus reverse transcriptase in the blast cells of a child with acute lymphoblastic leukemia1,2. The restricted expression of terminal transferase in normal cells had been reported one year earlier by Lucy Chang, working in Fred Bollum’s laboratory3. We interpreted our observation in the light of this restricted expression, postulating that TdT-positive leukemic cells were clonal expansions of TdT-positive normal cell compartments1,4.


Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia Blast Cell Lymphoblastic Lymphoma Severe Combine Immunodeficiency Disease 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ronald McCaffrey
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Richard Bell
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Anne Lillquist
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • George Wright
    • 4
  • Earl Baril
    • 5
  1. 1.Section of Medical Oncology of the Evans Memorial Department of Clinical ResearchBoston University Medical CenterBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of MedicineBoston University School of MedicineBostonUSA
  3. 3.Hubert H. Humphrey Cancer Research CenterBoston UniversityBostonUSA
  4. 4.Department of PharmacologyUniversity of Massachusetts Medical SchoolWorcesterUSA
  5. 5.Worcester Foundation for Experimental BiologyShrewsburyUSA

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