Tag Archive | "acute leukemia"

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Stem Cell Treatment Effective Against Rare Form of Leukaemia

Sophie Edward (age 8), who has been suffering from a rare form of leukemia underwent stem cell treatment three months ago and is making progress.

Leukemia is a cancer that affects the blood cells and is unfortunately one of the more common cancers found in children.

Regular control mechanisms in the blood break down and the bone marrow begins to produce large numbers of abnormal white blood cells, disturbing the  production of normal blood cells and ultimately affecting the vital functions that these blood cells carry out.

Leukemia is also classified as either lymphoid or myeloid, depending on the type of white blood cells affected.  It’s also categorized as either acute or chronic, depending on the speed of progression.

Sophie was diagnosed with a rare form of leukaemia, called acute lymphoblastic leukemia in February of 2008 and has tried bone marrow transplant previously, but eventually her bone marrow transplant did not take and she and her family had no other way left but to relay on stem cell transplant.

The original transplant that had eventually failed, took place at St James’s Hospital, in Leeds, UK back in October.

Three months ago Sophie underwent a special type of stem cell treatment that was the first of it’s kind in Leeds.

Doctors used part of the original bone marrow left over from the previous transplant, and it was transplanted unprepared (due to her being too ill and needing to be acted on immediately) and chemotherapy used to get rid of the cells she didn’t need.

According to Sophie’s mother, Emma Edwards of Newsome, Huddersfield, they watched carefully each day after the eight-year-old underwent the stem cell treatment three months ago, and after three months they are now very relieved as so far all the signs are good and she is starting to feel much better.

Almost all childhood leukaemias are of the acute form, meaning they progress rapidly.

Acute lymphoblastic (lymphoid) leukaemia (ALL) accounts for more than 80% of childhood leukemia cases.  It is the only form of leukaemia – and one of the few forms of cancer – that is less common in adults than in children.

Acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) accounts for most of the remaining cases.

Chronic leukaemias, which progress slowly, are very rare in childhood.

Chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) accounts for less than 3% of childhood leukemias

Chronic lymphoblastic leukaemia is very rare in children.

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Diseases Treated with Umbilical Cord Blood

The umbilical cord blood is rich in stem cells which are termed as hematopoietic cells. These cells have the capability to produce different kinds of cells in the blood i.e. red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.

It is found that stem cell transplantation cannot be used to treat all kinds of diseases but can treat more than 70 different types of diseases. Researchers have found that stem cells stored from umbilical cord can be used to treat various types of cancers, disorders and abnormalities.

With the success of stem cell transplantation in 1988 stem cells have been used to treat various diseases through stem cell transplants. The major advantage of stem cell transplants is that there is no requirement for a perfect donor match like in a bone marrow transplant and cord blood is available in cord blood banks, which can be made available.

Diseases that are treated by stem cells are:

1) Acute Leukemia

• Acute Lymphoblast Leukemia (ALL)
• Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)
• Acute Biphenotypic Leukemia
• Acute Undifferentiated Leukemia

2) Chronic Leukemia

• Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML)
• Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL)
• Juvenile Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (JCML)
• Juvenile Myelomonocytic Leukemia (JMML)
• Myelodysplastic Syndromes
• Amyloidosis
• Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukemia (CMML)
• Refractory Anemia (RA)
• Refractory Anemia with Excess Blasts (RAEB)
• Refractory Anemia with Excess Blasts in Transformation
• (RAEB-T)
• Refractory Anemia with Ringed Sideroblasts (RARS)


1) Stem Cell Disorders

• Aplastic Anemia (Severe)
• Fanconi Anemia
• Paroxysmal Nocturnal Hemoglobinuria (PNH)
• Congenital Cytopenia
• Dyskeratosis Congenita

2) Myeloproliferative Disorders

• Acute Myelofibrosis
• Agnogenic Myeloid Metaplasia (myelofibrosis)
• Polycythemia Vera
• Essential Thrombocythemia

3) Lymphoproliferative Disorders

• Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
• Hodgkin’s disease
• Prolymphocytic Leukemia

4) Phagocyte Disorders

• Chediak-Higashi Syndrome
• Chronic Granulomatous Disease
• Neutrophil Actin Deficiency
• Reticular Dysgenesis

5) Inherited Metabolic Disorders

• Mucopolysaccharidoses (MPS)
• Hurler’s Syndrome (MPS-IH)
• Scheie Syndrome (MPS-IS)
• Hunter’s Syndrome (MPS-II)
• Sanfilippo Syndrome (MPS-III)
• Morquio Syndrome (MPS-IV)
• Maroteaux-Lamy Syndrome (MPS-VI)
• Sly Syndrome, Beta-Glucuronidase Deficiency (MPS-VII)
• Adrenoleukodystrophy
• Mucolipidosis II (I-cell Disease)
• Krabbe Disease
• Gaucher’s Disease
• Niemann-Pick Disease
• Wolman Disease
• Metachromatic Leukodystrophy

6) Histiocytic Disorders

• Familial Erythrophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis
• Histiocytosis-X
• Hemophagocytosis
• Langerhans’ Cell Histiocytosis

7) Inherited Immune System Disorders

• Ataxia-Telangiectasia
• Kostmann Syndrome
• Leukocyte Adhesion Deficiency
• DiGeorge Syndrome
• Bare Lymphocyte Syndrome
• Omenn’s Syndrome
• Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID)
• SCID with Adenosine Deaminase Deficiency
• Absence of T & B Cells SCID
• Absence of T Cells, Normal B Cell SCID
• Common Variable Immunodeficiency
• Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome
• X-Linked Lymphoproliferative Disorder

8) Other Inherited Disorders

• Lesch-Nyhan Syndrome
• Cartilage-Hair Hypoplasia
• Glanzmann Thrombasthenia
• Osteopetrosis
• Adrenoleukodystrophy
• Ceroid Lipofuscinosis
• Congenital Erythropoietic Porphyria
• Sandhoff Disease

9) Plasma Cell Disorders

• Multiple Myeloma
• Plasma Cell Leukemia
• Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia
• Amyloidosis


1) Inherited Platelet Abnormalities

Amegakaryocytosis / Congenital Thrombocytopenia

2) Inherited Erythrocyte Abnormalities

• Beta Thalassemia Major
• Sickle Cell Disease
• Blackfan-Diamond Anemia
• Pure Red Cell Aplasia

Other Malignancies

• Ewing Sarcoma
• Neuroblastoma
• Renal Cell Carcinoma
• Retinoblastoma
• Brain tumor
• Ovarian Cancer
• Small Cell Lung Cancer
• Testicular Cancer

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