• MR Khawaja
  • SS Allana
  • AN Akbarali
  • SN Adil
  • M. Khurshid
  • S Pervez


Background: This study was carried out to analyze the proportion of T cell acute lymphoblasticleukemia (TALL) among all acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in Pakistani population and itscorrelation with the demographic features. Accuracy of cell surface markers used in flowcytometric analysis of the leukemic cells was also determined. Methods: Data of 209 consecutivecases of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) presenting between July 1995 and July 2003 wasanalyzed. Flow cytometry was performed on all ALL cases using the standard protocols. TALLmarkers included CD3, CD5 and CD7. Results: Proportion of TALL among known ALLPakistani patients was 17.22%. Mean age of the TALL patients was 17.2 years. Proportion ofTALL was higher in adults than in children (21.95% vs. 14.17%). Overall in this study there weremore male patients affected by TALL (25/36 or 69.40%) than females (11/36 or 30.60%). Thefemale to male ratio among TALL patients was 1:2.27. However, the proportion (%) of TALL infemales was higher than males (18.96% vs. 15.82 %) i, e, 1.2:1. CD7 was found to be the mostsensitive among both adults & children. It was positive in 94.4% of the TALL cases. Conclusion:Proportion of TALL among ALL in Pakistan is similar to that reported in this region, indicating acandidate association with geographical location and socioeconomic status. The reactivity ofmarkers with TALL cells was similar to what we expected based upon literature. However, due tosome aberrant and cross reactivity displayed by each marker, we strongly recommend a panelapproach including B and myeloid markers to ensure a correct diagnosis of TALL.Keywords: Leukemia, T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (TALL), Flow Cytometry


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