Background: FLT3-ITD mutations are common in AML subgroups, particularly in Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia (APL). It infers poor prognosis in AML patients; however, its prognostic value in APL is still controversial. We aimed to assess the distribution and prognostic value of FLT3-ITD mutation within AML subgroups, focusing on APL.
Methods: In NCI, Cairo University, 346 newly diagnosed AML patients were included. Morphological, immunophenotypic and cytogenetic analysis were done at presentation and fixed follow-up points with monitoring in follow up visits of patients. FLT3-ITD mutations were detected using RT-PCR.
Results: FLT3-ITD mutations were detected in 18.5% of AML patients with significant higher incidence in M3 patients (35.5%, p = 0.027) in comparison to other types. There was significant negative association between FLT3ITD mutations and CD34 expression (p = 0.026). FLT3 wild patients had a significantly better response on Day 35 than the mutant group (p = 0.046). Overall Survival (OS) of the wild group was significantly better than that of the mutant group (p = 0.003). In APL patients, OS of wild-FLT3 patients was significantly better than of those with mutant FLT3 (p = 0.018). In non-APL patients, favorable cytogenetic changes - t(8;21) and inv(16) - are more common in FLT3 wild group (12.8%) than in FLT3 mutant group (6.3%). In non-APL patients, FLT3-ITD mutation retained its adverse prognostic effect (p = 0.016). CD34 expression affected survival in both FLT3 mutant and wild groups.
Conclusions: We conclude that FLT3-ITD mutations infer poor prognostic effects both in AML patients generally and in the APL group specifically. CD34 may have a prognostic impact in FLT3-ITD mutant patients, which is to be further investigated.