Discrepancies between DNA index by flow cytometry and cytogenetic studies in childhood B-lymphoblastic leukemia

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Background: DNA index by flow cytometry (DNAI-FCM) is a rapid technique used in classification of acute B-lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL). The objective of this study is to estimate the reliability of FCM in the early classification of childhood B-ALL and to analyze the causes of discrepancies between the DNAI-FCM and the cytogenetic studies (CG) (Karyotype and Fluorescent in situ Hybridization [FISH]).
Materials and Methods: DNAI-FCM and CG (Karyotype and FISH) were analyzed in 69 consecutive children, newly diagnosed with B-ALL in King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre between January 2013 and June 2014.
Results: A statistically significant correlation existed between DNAI-FCM and CG (P = 0.001). DNAI-FCM was proportional to CG in 82.6% (57/69) of the cases. There was a discrepancy between the DNAI-FCM and the CG in 17.4% (12/69) of the cases.
Conclusion: DNAI-FCM shows 82.6% concordance with CG in childhood B-ALL with a predictive value of 81%. Discrepancies occur due to either the small size of the chromosome or due to insufficient genetic material representing the abnormality.


This work was published before the author joined Aga Khan University


Journal of Applied Hematology