NMDS Group logo

NMDS Group

Contents[Show]
 

1. Introduction

Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) is a group of clonal bone marrow disorders characterized by ineffective hematopoiesis resulting in cytopenias and an increased risk of developing acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Myelodysplastic-myeloproliferative neoplasms (MDS-MPN) share myelodysplastic and myeloproliferative features. The prognosis varies from mild chronic anemia to profound pancytopenia and rapid progression to AML. The Nordic MDS Group (NMDSG) has conducted clinical trials in MDS since 1

 

985 and have published on-line guidelines at www.nmds.org since 2003.

2. Writing committee

Astrid Olsnes Kittang (chair), Lucia Cavelier, Ingunn Dybedal, Freja Ebeling, Elisabeth Ejerblad, Lone Friis, Hege Garelius, Andreas Glenthøj, Kirsten Grønbæk, Mette Skov Holm, Martin Jädersten, Lars Kjeldsen, Eva Hellström Lindberg, Per Ljungman, Jan Maxwell Nørgaard, Lars Nilsson, Eira Poikonen, Anna Porwit, Klas Raaschou-Jensen, and Leonie Saft.

3. Contact information

Comments can be directed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or directly to one of the committee members.

4. News in issue 8

We have included the WHO 2016 classification, interpretation of NGS-data for MDS and CMML in diagnostic work-up and prognostic evaluation. The section on iron chelation is updated.

5. Evidence levels and recommendation grades

Where possible and appropriate, recommendation grade (A, B and C) and evidence level (I – IV) are given (for definitions see Table 1). Grade A does not imply that a treatment is more recommendable than a grade B, but implies that the given recommendation regarding the use of a specific treatment is based on at least one randomized trial.

Table 1.

Levels of evidence

Level

Type of evidence

Ia

Evidence obtained from meta-analysis of randomized trials

Ib

Evidence obtained from at least one randomized controlled trial

IIa

Evidence obtained from at least one well-designed controlled study without randomisation

IIb

Evidence obtained from at least one other type of well-designed quasi-experimental study

III

Evidence obtained from well-designed non-experimental descriptive studies, such as comparative studies, correlation studies and case control studies

IV

Evidence obtained from expert committee reports and/or clinical experiences of respected authorities

 

Grades of recommendation

Grade

Evidence level

Recommendation

A

Ia, Ib

Required: At least one randomized controlled trial as part of the body of literature of overall good quality and consistency addressing specific recommendation

B

IIa, IIb, III

Required: Availability of well-conducted clinical studies but no randomized clinical trials on the topic of recommendation

C

IV

Required: Evidence obtained from expert committee reports or opinions and /or clinical experiences of respected authorities.

Indicates absence of directly applicable studies of good quality

6. Diagnostic workup of suspected MDS

 

The diagnosis of MDS rests largely on morphological findings of bone marrow dysplasia in patients with clinical evidence of impaired hematopoiesis manifested by cytopenia defined using standard laboratory values for cytopenias (Hb <130 g/L [males], <120 g/L [females], ANC <1.8 × 109/L, platelets <150 × 109/L)1

Immunophenotyping by Flow cytometry is an additional tool for the detection of aberrant antigen expression patterns or pathological blast populations at diagnosis and during follow-up.

Chromosomal aberrations are detected in approximately 50 % of newly diagnosed MDS2 and should be performed in all cases with suspected MDS3.

Detection of mutations with next-generation sequencing may provide important additional information. The diagnosis of MDS requires integration of all findings.

6.1. Table 2. 2016 revision to the WHO classification of MDS

Entity name

Number of
dysplastic lineages

Number of
cytopenias

Ring sideroblasts as
percentage
of marrow
erythroid elements

Bone marrow (BM)
and peripheral blood
(PB) blasts

Cytogenetics by conventional
karyotype analysis

MDS-SLD

1

1-2

< 15% / < 5%b

BM < 5%,
PB < 1%,
no Auer rods

Any, unless fulfils all criteria for
MDS with isolated del(5q)

MDS-MLD

2-3 

1-3

< 15% / < 5%b

BM < 5%,
PB < 1%,
no Auer rods

Any, unless fulfils all criteria for
MDS with isolated del(5q)

MDS-RS

MDS-RS-SLD

MDS-RS-MLD

 

 1

2-3

 

 1-2

1-3

≥ 15% / ≥ 5%b

BM < 5%,
PB < 1%,
no Auer rods

Any, unless fulfils all criteria for
MDS with isolated del(5q)

MDS with isolated del(5q) 

1-3 

1-2

None or any 

BM < 5%,
PB < 1%,
no Auer rods

del(5q) alone or with
1 additional abnormality, except
loss of chromosome 7 or del(7q)

MDS-EB

MDS-EB-1

 

MDS-EB-2

 

0-3

 

1-3

 

 

None or any

 

 

BM 5–9% or
PB 2–4%,
no Auer rods

BM 10–19% or
PB 5–19%
or Auer rods

 

Any

MDS-U

with 1% blood blasts

 

with SLD and pancytopenia

 

based on defining cytogenetic abnormality

 

1-3

 

1

 

0

 

1-3

 

3

 

1-3

 

None or any

 

None or any

 

< 15%d

 

BM < 5%,
PB = 1%c,
no Auer rods

 

BM < 5%,
PB < 1%,
no Auer rods

BM < 5%,
PB < 1%,
no Auer rods

 

Any

 

Any

 

MDS-defining abnormality e

MDS-EB, MDS with excess blasts; MDS-MLD, MDS with multilineage dysplasia; MDS-RS, MDS with ring sideroblasts; MDS-RS-MLD, MDS with ring sideroblasts and multilineage dysplasia; MDS-RS-SLD, MDS with ring sideroblasts and single-lineage dysplasia; MDS-SLD, MDS with single-lineage dysplasia; MDS-U, MDS, unclassifiable; SLD, single-lineage dysplasia.
a Cytopenias defined as hemoglobin concentration < 100 g/L, platelet count < 100 × 109 cells/L, and absolute neutrophil count < 1.8 × 109 cells/L. Rarely, MDS can present with mild anemia or thrombocytopenia above these levels; PB monocytes must be < 1 × 109 cells/L. b If SF3B1 mutation is present. c1% PB blasts must be recorded on ≥ 2 separate occasions.
d Cases with ≥ 15% ring sideroblasts by definition have significant erythroid dysplasia and are classified as MDS-RS-SLD.

e Unbalanced: Loss of chromosome 7 or del(7q), del(5q), isochromosome 17q or t(17p), loss of chromosome 13

or del(13q), del(11q), del(12p) or t(12p), del(9q), idic(X)(q13). Balanced: t(11;16)(q23.3;p13.3), t(3;21)(q26.2;q22.1), t(1;3)(p36.3;q21.2), t(2;11)(p21;q23.3), inv(3)(q21.3q26.2)/t(3;3)(q21.3;q26.2), t(6;9)(p23;q34.1).

6.2. Table 3. 2016 revision to WHO classification of myelodysplastic/myeloproliferative neoplasms 

Disease

Peripheral blood findings

Bone marrow findings

Chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML)

Peripheral blood monocytosis > 1x109/l

Not meeting WHO criteria for BCR/ABL1-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), primary myelofibrosis (PMF), polycythemia vera (PV) of essential thrombocythemia (ET) 1

No rearrangement of PDGFRAPDGFRB or FGFR1

< 20 % blasts 2

If myelodysplasia is absent or minimal, the diagnosis of CMML may still be made if the other requirements are met and an acquired clonal cytogenetic or molecular genetic abnormality is present in hemopoietic cells  3 OR the monocytosis (as previously defined) has persisted for at least 3 months and all other causes of monocytosis have been excluded

 

Dysplasia in one or more myeloid lineage1

< 20 % blasts 2

 

 

Atypical chronic myeloid leukemia, BCR-ABL1 negative (aCML)

Leukocytosis, neutrophilia

Neutrophilic dysplasia

Neutrophils and their precursors ³10 % of leukocytes

No BCR-ABL1 fusion gene

No evidence of PDGFRA, PDGFRB or FGFR1 rearrangement or PCM1-JAK2 (should be  specifically excluded in cases with eosinophilia)

No or minimal basophilia

Monocytes < 10% of leukocytes

Not meeting WHO criteria for PMF, PV or ET 4

Hypercellular BM with granulocytic proliferation and granulocytic dysplasia with or without dysplastic erythroid and megakaryocytic lineages

< 20 % blasts in PB and BM

Juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JML)

I. Clinical and hematologic features (all 4 features mandatory). Peripheral blood monocyte count >1x10 9/L, blast percentage in peripheral blood and bone marrow <20%, splenomegaly, absence of Philadelphia chromosome (BCR/ABL1 rearrangement). II. Genetic studies (1 finding sufficient). Somatic mutation in PTPN11 or KRAS or NRAS (germline mutations (indicating Noonan syndrome) need to be excluded) clinical diagnosis of NF1 or NF1 mutation, germline CBL 

mutation and loss of heterozygosity of CBL (occasional cases with heterozygous splice site mutations). III. For patients without genetic features, besides features listed under I, the following criteria must be fulfilled: Monosomy 7 or any other chromosomal abnormality, or at least 2 of the following criteria: Hemoglobin F increased for age, myeloid or erythroid precursors on peripheral blood smear, GM-CSF hypersensitivity in colony assay, hyper phosphorylation of STAT

 

<20% blasts.

Evidence of clonality

 

Myelodysplastic/myeloproliferative neoplasm with ring sideroblasts and thrombocytosis (MDS/MPN-RS-T)

Anemia

Persistent thrombocytosis > 450 x 109/L

Presence of SF3B1 mutation or, in the absence of SF3B1 mutation, no history of recent cytotoxic or growth factor therapy that could explain the myelodysplastic/myeloproliferative features 6No BCR-ABL1 fusion gene, no rearrangement of PDGFRA, PDGFRB or FGFR1; or PCM1-JAK2; no

t(3;3)(q21;q26),inv(3)(q21q26) or del(5q) 7

No preceding MPN, MDS (except MDS-RS), or other type of MDS/MPN 

< 1 % blasts in PB and    < 5 % blasts in BM

Dyserythropoiesis in the BM with ring sideroblasts ³15% of erythroid precursors5. Abnormal megakaryocytes as observed in PMF or ET

Myelodysplastic/myeloproliferative neoplasm, unclassifiable (MDS/MPN)

Mixed MDS and MPN features

No prior diagnosis of MDS or MPN

No history of recent growth factor or cytotoxic therapy to explain MDS or MPN features

No BCR-ABL1 fusion gene or rearrangements of PDGFRA or PDGFRB

Mixed MDS and MPN features

<20% blasts

1 Cases of MPN can be associated with monocytosis or they can develop it during the course of the disease. These cases may simulate CMML. In these rare instances, a previous documented history of MPN excludes CMML, while the presence of MPN features in the bone marrow and/or of MPN- associated mutations (JAK2, CALR or MPL) tend to support MPN with monocytosis rather than CMML.

2 Blasts and blast equivalents include myeloblasts, monoblasts and promonocytes. Promonocytes are monocytic precursors with abundant light grey or slightly basophilic cytoplasm with a few scattered, fine lilac-colored granules, finely-distributed, stippled nuclear chromatin, variably prominent nucleoli, and delicate nuclear folding or creasing. Abnormal monocytes, which can be present both in the PB and BM, are excluded from the blast count.

3 The presence of mutations in genes often associated with CMML (e.g. TET2, SRSF2, ASXL1, SETBP1) in the proper clinical contest can be used to support a diagnosis. It should be noted however, that many of these mutations can be age-related or be present in sub clones. Therefore caution would have to be used in the interpretation of these genetic results.

4 Cases of myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN), particularly those in accelerated phase and/or in post-polycythemic or post-essential thrombocythemic myelofibrosis, if neutrophilic, may simulate aCML. A previous history of MPN, the presence of MPN features in the bone marrow and/or MPN-associated mutations (in JAK2, CALR or MPL) tend to exclude a diagnosis of aCML. Conversely, a diagnosis of aCML is supported by the presence of SETBP1 and/or ETNK1 mutations. The presence of a CSF3R mutation is uncommon in aCML and if detected should prompt a careful morphologic review to exclude an alternative diagnosis of chronic neutrophilic leukemia or other myeloid neoplasm.

5 15% ring sideroblasts required even if SF3B1 mutation is detected.

6A diagnosis of MDS/MPN-RS-T is strongly supported by the presence of SF3B1 mutation together with a mutation in JAK2 V617F, CALR or MPL genes

7 In a case which otherwise fulfills the diagnostic criteria for MDS with isolated del(5q)-No or minimal absolute basophilia; basophils usually <2% of leukocytes.

Next generation sequencing (NGS), mutations in > 40 myeloid genes have recently been detected in approximately 90 % of MDS patients4,5. The most frequently mutated genes are summarized in Table 12. 

Mutational screening by NGS of genes commonly mutated in myeloid malignancies is emerging as an integral part of the diagnostic work-up and in prognosis evaluation. In younger individuals (< 50 years) the possibility of congenital or hereditary conditions must be considered, especially in the presence of a positive family history, concomitant physical abnormalities (nail dystrophy, facial abnormalities) or unexplained liver/pancreas/pulmonary affections. These conditions include Congenital Dyserytropoietic Anemias (CDA), Telomere-associated syndromes including Congenital Dyskeratosis, Hereditary Sideroblastic Anemia, Fanconi Anemia (FA), Congenital Neutropenias (Kostmann, Schwachman-Diamond), Diamond-Blackfan Anemia (DBA), familial platelet disorders including those with RUNX1 mutation, and GATA2-mutations. The most well-known hereditary myeloid malignancy syndromes are summarized in Table 13. 

Patient history and examination

  • Detailed family history at least 2 generations back, including cancer, bone marrow failure, liver/lung disorders or early deaths.
  • Prior chemotherapy or irradiation, occupational exposure, alcohol-use, concomitant medication.
  • Tendency for bleeding or infection.
  • Complete physical examination including spleen size. 

Blood tests

  • WBC, differential, hemoglobin, platelet count, red blood cell indices (MCV, MCHC) and reticulocyte count.
  • Folic acid, cobalamin, (homocysteine and methyl malonic acid if in doubt).
  • Ferritin, LDH, bilirubin, haptoglobin, DAT (Coombs test), ALAT, ASAT, alkaline phosphatase, albumin, uric acid, creatinine, S-erythropoietin, S-protein electrophoresis.
  • Screening for HIV, hepatitis B and C.
  • PCR for parvovirus B19 in hypoplastic MDS.
  • If suspicion of telomere-associated disease, you may consider to contact regional coordinator for advice concerning analysis of telomere length and specific mutations.                                                          

Morphology

  • Significant dysplasia within at least one lineage (erythro-, granulo-, or megakaryopoiesis), and is defined as ≥ 10 % of cells with dysplastic features; a threshold of 30% is recommended for megakaryocytes.
  • Blast count should be based on evaluation of at least 500 nucleated bone marrow cells (including erythroid) and 200 nucleated cells from peripheral blood.
  • Marrow histology/immunohistochemistry: Evaluation of marrow sections provides additional information including cellularity, evidence of fibrosis, and marrow architecture including cell infiltrates or clustering. Immunohistochemistry for CD34 and p53 is recommended at diagnosis and at follow-up. The presence of cells with strong nuclear p53 staining may indicate an underlying TP53 mutation6

Cytogenetics

  • Standard karyotyping should be performed in all patients to allow correct classification and prognostic assessment.
  • Next-generation sequencing (NGS): Mutational screening with NGS is recommended in potential transplant candidates of all MDS categories to further refine risk stratification and strengthen the diagnosis in borderline cases7,8

Clonal cytopenia of unknown significance (CCUS) and Idiopathic cytopenia of unknown significance (ICUS) 

Clonal hematopoiesis is gradually more prevalent in with increasing age and may be present in the absence of cytopenias (CCUS). The expanding clones typically harbor similar mutations observed in myeloid disorders and carries a variable risk of evolving to MDS. These patients should be monitored, and the number of mutations and variant allele frequency (VAF) are useful predictors of risk of progression (Table 4). Unexplained cytopenias without significant dysplasia or evidence of clonal hematopoiesis are classified as Idiopathic Cytopenia of Undetermined Significance (ICUS)9

6.3. Table 4. Comparison of genetic characteristic between CHIP, CCUS and MDS (adapted from Bejar9

 

 CHIP

CCUS at diagnosis

CCUS prior to MDS/AML progression

MDS all risk groups

Commonly mutated genes

DNMT3A, TET2, ASXL1, PPM1D, JAK2, TP53

TET2, DNMT3A, ASXL1, SRSF2, TP53

TET2, SRSF2, ASXL1, U2AF1, DNMT3A

SF3B1, TET2, ASXL1, SRSF2, DNMT3A

Mean number of mutations

~1

~1.6

~2

~2.6

Typical VAF

9-12%

30-40%

40 %

30-50%

Incidence

10-15% in 70-year olds

35% of ICUS

90% of ICUS

<50% of cytopenic patients

Risk of progression to MDS

0,5-1 % risk of transformation to a hematologic neoplasm10

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Abbreviations: CHIP – clonal hematopoiesis of indeterminate potential, CCUS -clonal cytopenia of undetermined significance, ICUS – idiopathic cytopenia of unknown significant, VAF – variant allele frequency 

Differential diagnosis:

The diagnosis of MDS may be difficult, in particular in patients with less than 5 % bone marrow blasts and only one cytopenia. No single morphologic finding is diagnostic for MDS and it is important to keep in mind that MDS sometimes remains a diagnosis of exclusion. Differential diagnoses to be considered:

  • B12 / folate deficiency
  • Recent cytotoxic therapy
  • HIV/HCV/HBV/Parvovirus B19/CMV/EBV-infection
  • Anemia of chronic disease
  • Autoimmune cytopenia
  • Chronic liver disease
  • Excessive alcohol intake
  • Exposure to heavy metals
  • Drug-induced cytopenias
  • Other stem cell disorders incl. acute leukemia (with dysplasia or megakaryoblastic leukemia), aplastic anemia, myelofibrosis (in case of MDS with marrow fibrosis) and paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH)
  • Other cancers infiltrating the bone marrow
  • Congenital cytopenias/bone marrow failure disorders

7. Prognosis

7.1. IPSS for MDS (International Prognostic Scoring System)

IPSS Score

Bone Marrow Blasts (%)
Karyotype
Cytopenias

Cytopenias: Neutrophils < 1.5 x 109/L, Platelets < 100 x 109/L, Hemoglobin < 10 g/L ( 6.2 mM).

 All patients (n=816):

Risk group

Score

Median survival

(years)

Time to AML transformation

(for 25% in years)

Low risk

0

5.7

9.4

INT-1

0.5-1.0

3.5

3.3

INT-2

1.5-2.0

1.2

1.1

High risk

≥2.5

0.4

0.2

 

Patients below age 60 (n=205):

Risk group

Score

Median survival

(years)

Time to AML transformation

(for 25% in years)

Low risk

0

11.8

>9.4

INT-1

0.5-1.0

5.2

6.9

INT-2

1.5-2.0

1.8

0.7

High risk

≥2.5

0.3

0.2 

Reference: Greenberg P, Cox C, LeBeau MM, Fenaux P, Morel P, Sanz G et al. International scoring system for evaluating prognosis in myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood 1997; 89: 2079-2088.

The score excludes s/t-MDS and CMML with leukocyte count >12 x109/l11.

7.2. Revised IPSS (IPSS-R)

IPSS-R Score

Cytogenetic Category
Bone Marrow Blasts (%)
Hemoglobin (mM)
Platelets (109/L)
Neutrophils (109/L)

 

Score Risk category Median OS (years) Median time to 25% AML risk (years)
≤ 1.5 Very low 8.8 NR
2.0 - 3.0 Low 5.3 10.8
3.5 - 4.5 Intermediate 3.0 3.2
5.0 - 6.0 High 1.6 1.4
> 6.0 Very high 0.8 0.73

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reference: Greenberg PL, Tuechler H, Schanz J, Sanz G, Garcia-Manero G, Solé F et al. Revised international prognostic scoring system for myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood 2012; 120: 2454-65

Based on 7012 untreated patients excluded s/t-MDS and CMML with leukocyte count >12 x109/l.12

7.3. Simplified risk categories (IPSS and IPSS-R)

In daily clinical practice, MDS is divided into ”low risk” MDS encompassing IPSS low risk and INT-1, whereas ”high risk” includes IPSS INT-2 and high risk. This separation is practical since it reflects the different treatment strategies in the two groups. IPSS-R can be simplified into three risk groups, namely “low risk” including very low and low risk groups, “intermediate risk” and “high risk”, the latter consisting of high and very high risk groups. Use of additional differentiating features could be of particular value for categorization of IPSS-R intermediate risk patients.

7.4. Additional prognostic factors

  • Comorbidity
    • MDS-specific comorbidity index (MDS-CI)13 is based on: cardiac, liver, renal, pulmonary disease and solid tumors.
  • Fibrosis
    • Bone marrow fibrosis grade 2 and 3 confers an inferior prognosis.
  • Mutations associated with poor prognosis
    • TP53, EZH2, ETV6, RUNX1, NRAS and ASXL18. Several mutated genes are linked to specific clinical risk factors.
  • Mutations associated with higher bone marrow blasts and thrombocytopenia:TP53, RUNX1, ASXL1, SRSF2 and NRAS,
  • TP53 mutation is associated with lower neutrophil counts and complex karyotype
  • SF3B1mutation is associated with ring sideroblasts and a trend towards longer survival. 

Genes frequently mutated in MDS are listed in Table 12.

  • Mutations in TP53, EZH2, RUNX1, ETV6, and ASXL1 associate with higher risk than predicted by IPSS and IPSS-R while mutations in genes such as CBL, PRPF8, EZH2, PTPN11 and NF1 have adverse prognostic associations independent of IPSS-R.
  • Mutations in ASXL1, SRSF2, U2AF1 and SF3B1 have a prognostic significance thus only in patients with <5% blasts, while their prognostic significance is lost at higher blast counts (Figure 1)9. Additionally, the number of pathogenic variants in a patient has been found to be prognostically significant5,8,14,15

 

figure 1 genes frequently mutated

Figure 1. Mutated genes with independent prognostic significance by MDS bone marrow blast proportion. Genes in the figure are associated with overall survival after adjustment for IPSS-R risk groups. Genes in the blue circle are significant in patients with less than 5% blasts in the bone marrow. Genes in the red circle remain significant in patients with higher blast counts. SF3B1 mutations are independently prognostically favorable (Figure adapted from Bejar9).

 

A lot of work remains to outline the clinical relevance of the mutational pattern of MDS. Mutational screening is at the moment not required as a part of the routine work up, but we recommend that it should be performed when the patient candidate for allogeneic stem cell transplantation and in borderline cases.

7.5. Recommendation for diagnosis and prognosis 

  • All patients should be classified according to WHO 2016 classification.
  • All patients should be risk stratified according to IPSS and IPSS-R.
  • Additional prognostic features, such as bone marrow fibrosis, co-morbidity and molecular genetics may also be useful, as well as p53 analysis by immunohistochemistry or sequencing.
  • MDS should be reported to the National Cancer registries in all Nordic countries and to MDS specific registries, if applicable. 

figure 2 enrichment of mutations in sAML and HR MDS

Figure 2. Enrichment of mutations in sAML and high risk MDS versus high-risk and low-risk MDS respectively. Enrichment of mutations expressed as odds ratio (OR) of mutation rates in s-AML vs high risk MDS (x-axis) and in high risk MDS vs low risk MDS (y-axis). Non-significant OR are represented by black circles. Adapted from 16.

8. International Working Group (IWG) modified response criteria 

The IWG criteria17 define four aspects of response based on treatment goals: (1) altering the natural history of disease, (2) cytogenetic response, (3) hematological improvement (HI), and (4) quality of life. 

Table 7. Proposed modified IWG response criteria for altering natural history of MDS

Category

Response criteria (response must last at least 4 weeks)

Complete remission

Bone marrow £ 5% myeloblasts with normal maturation of all cell lines

Persistent dysplasia will be noted

Peripheral blood:

Hb ³ 110 g/l,

Platelets ³ 100 x109/L,

Neutrophils ³ 1.0 x109/L

Blasts 0%.  

Partial remission

All CR criteria if abnormal before treatment except:

Bone marrow blasts decreased by ³ 50% over pre-treatment but still > 5%

Cellularity and morphology not relevant

Marrow CR

BM £5% myeloblasts and decrease by ³ 50% over pre-treatment

Peripheral blood: if HI responses, they will be noted in addition to marrow CR

Stable disease

Failure to achieve at least PR, but no evidence of progression for > 8 wks

Failure

Death during treatment or disease progression characterized by worsening of cytopenias, increase in percentage of BM blasts, or progression to a more advanced MDS subtype than pretreatment

Relapse after CR or PR

At least one of the following:

  Return to pretreatment BM blast percentage

  Decrement of ³ 50% from maximum remission/response levels in granulocytes or platelets

  Reduction in Hb concentration by ³ 15 g/L or transfusion dependence

Cytogenetic response

Complete: Disappearance of the chromosomal abnormality without new ones

Partial: At least 50% reduction of the chromosomal abnormality

Disease progression

³ 50% increase in blasts

Any of the following:

  At least 50% decrement from maximum remission/ response in granulocytes or platelets

  Reduction of Hb by ³ 20g/L

  Transfusion dependence

Survival

Endpoints:

  Overall: death from any cause

  Event free: failure or death from any cause

  PFS: disease progression or death from MDS

  DFS: time to relapse

  Cause-specific death: death related to MDS

Proposed modified IWG response criteria for haematological improvement

Haematological improvement

Response criteria (response must last at least 8 weeks)

Erythroid response (pre-treatment<110 g/L)

Hb increase by ³ 15g/L

Relevant reduction of units of RBC transfusions by an absolute number of at least 4 RBC transfusions/8 wk compared with the pretreatment transfusion number in the previous 8 wk. Only RBC transfusions given for Hb £ 90g/L pre-treatment will count in the RBC transfusion evaluation

Platelet response (pre-treatment<100 x109/L)

Absolute increase of ³ 30 x 109/L for patients starting with > 20 x 109/L

Increase from < 20 x 109/L to > 20 x 109/L and by at least 100%

Neutrophil response (pre-treatment<1.0 x109/L)

At least 100% increase and an absolute increase > 0.5 x 109/L

Progression or relapse after HI

At least 1 of the following:

  At least 50% decrement from maximum response levels in granulocytes or platelets

  Reduction in Hb by ³ 15g/L

  Transfusion dependence

9. Therapeutic intervention and follow up of MDS

 

We recommend that all newly diagnosed patients are evaluated at a center with hematological experience. Patients should undergo regular follow-up including blood tests. If a patient is considered a candidate for therapeutic intervention at disease progression, regular bone marrow analysis is recommended. However, it should be pointed out that the primary WHO classification of MDS should not be changed on the basis of follow-up bone marrow examination but the changes should be interpreted as e.g. progression of transformation.

Due to the vast heterogeneity of the disease, therapeutic options range from observation only to allogeneic SCT. Decision-making about treatment may be difficult. It is essential that patients are evaluated for curative approaches at diagnosis, since e.g. allo-SCT in progressive phase of MDS has a poor outcome. It is our recommendation that suitable patients are offered treatment within study protocols or, alternatively, are treated according to the recommendations of the Nordic MDS-group.

9.1. Algorithm for treatment of symptomatic low-risk MDS

  1. Consider potentially curative treatment (allogeneic stem cell transplantation) for patients with IPSS-R intermediate, in particular in the case of additional risk factors (high-risk genetic features, bone marrow fibrosis, transfusion need, mutated p53 etc.). Special attention should be given to patients categorized as intermediate risk according to IPSS-R, since few therapeutic studies have so far used this category as a criterion.
  2. For patients with anemia, consider EPO ± G-CSF to patients with predictive score 0 or 1 according to the predictive model.
  3. High-quality transfusion- and chelation therapy, when indicated.
  4. Evaluate patients with MDS with single lineage dysplasia (MDS-SLD) and MDS with multiple lineage dysplasia (MDS-MLD) for immunosuppressive treatment.
  5. Lenalidomide treatment for patients with IPSS-R low and intermediate risk MDS with isolated del(5q), who have failed growth factor treatment or are not eligible for this treatment according to the predictive model, and who are not p53 positive by immunohistochemistry. Extreme precaution with lenalidomide treatment in younger patients who may be eligible for SCT.
  6. Patients with severe cytopenia and/or transfusion dependency who have failed other relevant therapies should be considered for experimental treatment within a clinical trial.

9.2. Algorithm for treatment of patients with high-risk MDS

  1. Evaluate for curative treatment; allogeneic stem cell transplantation.
  2. Evaluate patient for azacitidine treatment.
  3. Evaluate patient for AML like chemotherapy; especially younger patients with good risk features for response.
  4. Supportive care only or experimental treatment within a clinical trial.

10. Supportive Care

10.1. Transfusion 

A recent study suggests that quality of life is improved with higher target Hb levels for transfusion18. Use leukocyte-filtered blood products. 

Red cell transfusions:

  • Transfuse for symptoms of anemia. Planning for transfusion should be made on an individual basis by the patient and the physician, taking into account co-morbid illness as well as quality of life issues. No universal trigger or target for transfusion is recommended. 

Platelet transfusions: Please see thrombocytopenia section. 

10.2. Iron Chelation 

Background

There are currently three different iron chelators available, Desferrioxamine (DFO) to be given preferably by iv or sc infusion, and Deferasirox and Deferiprone, both given orally, the latter only available in some Nordic countries. A large prospective phase 2 trial has been conducted in which 341 patients with MDS were treated with deferasirox for one year19. Reduction in median ferritin level and labile plasma iron was observed, and the drug was generally well tolerated with gastrointestinal side effects and impairment of renal function most frequently reported. There are no studies proving the effect of iron chelation on long-term outcome in MDS.  No randomized trials comparing the efficiency of the different iron chelators have been conducted in MDS. In practice, oral chelation is generally the first choice, and if not efficient or tolerable treatment could be changed to desferrioxamine.

The goal of the treatment is to achieve a safe tissue iron concentration by promoting negative iron balance and iron detoxification. 

Indication:

  • Iron chelation is recommended in patients for whom long term transfusion therapy is likely, generally meaning patients with low and INT-1 IPSS-score (Very low and Low risk in IPSS-R). Start treatment when S-Ferritin > 1500 mg/l, or after approximately 25 units red cell transfusions.
  • For transfusion-dependent patients that may be candidates for a future allogeneic transplantation it is crucial to avoid iron overload, and iron chelation should then be considered preventive and be initiated at an earlier stage.

 Monitoring iron chelation:

  • The target Ferritin level is <1000 mg/l. 

Parenteral chelators

Desferrioxamine (DFO) treatment

  • 40 mg/kg (20-50 mg) by subcutaneous infusion over 8-12 hours 5-7 days per week.
  • Alternatively give DFO 5-10 g via portable infusion pump in a venous port over 5 days when the patient receives blood transfusion.
  • Vitamin C 2-3 mg/kg/d could be started 4 weeks after the onset of DFO therapy to improve iron excretion. Caution, higher doses may be associated with cardiac arrhythmia.
  • Continuous (uninterrupted) 24 hour DFO should be considered in patients at high risk, e.g. with Ferritin persistently > 2500 mg/l and significant cardiac disease.
  • In case of severe iron overload with insufficient effect of DFO, it can be combined with deferiprone or deferasirox in usual doses.

Recommendation:

Recommendation grade B, evidence level III. 

Oral chelators 

Deferasirox treatment

  • NB: Film-coated tablets available from December 2016. The new tablets can be taken with water or a small meal, and no prior dissolving is needed. The tablets have 3 dosages; 90, 180 and 360 mg, equivalent to 125, 250 and 500 mg for the old tablets. The new start dose will be 7-14 mg/kg with a target dose of 14-28 mg/kg. Compared to the old, dispersible formulation, better tolerance with less gastrointestinal side effects has been reported for the new tablets20.
  • S- creatinine, S-ALAT and S-ASAT should be measured weekly the first four weeks of treatment, and then monthly. In case of elevated s-creatinine > 2 ULN, deferasirox should be interrupted and then restarted at lower dose. 

Recommendation:

Recommendation grade B, evidence level IIa

Deferiprone treatment

  • 75 mg/kg in three divided doses
  • Can be combined with DFO to improve the efficiency of iron chelation
  • Check blood counts weekly to rule out deferiprone-induced neutropenia, although the reported incidence is probably <1%.
  • Not recommended in patients with pre-existing severe neutropenia 

Recommendation:

Recommendation grade B, evidence level III. 

10.3. Thrombocytopenia 

Background

Thrombocytopenia is present in 40-65 % and is the primary cause of death in 12 % of all MDS patients. Thrombocytopenia is also associated with RUNX1 and TP53 mutations, an increased risk of leukemic transformation and reduced overall survival. MDS patients often also present with functional platelet defects and increased platelet destruction. 

Platelet transfusion is the most important supportive care for clinically significant thrombocytopenia and approximately 10 % of MDS patients are platelet transfusion dependent at diagnosis. Although platelet transfusions are an effective way to increase the platelet levels transiently and thus can be used for active bleedings or before dental or other invasive procedures, they are expensive, associated with several risks as febrile or allergic reactions, transfusion-related acute lung injury and transmission of viral or bacterial infections. Frequent platelet transfusions also lead to allo-immunization which eventually renders the patient refractory to transfusions unless derived from an HLA-matched donor. 

Lenalidomide treatment in MDS with 5q deletion is often associated with the development or worsening of thrombocytopenia and is considered a good prognostic sign for a response to the treatment. Azacitidine treatment is frequently associated with a worsening of thrombocytopenia, especially during the first two courses but reversal of thrombocytopenia early in the treatment is considered a positive predictive factor for response. 

Decision-making and treatment

  • Platelet transfusion is recommended in thrombocytopenic patients with moderate or severe bleeding. A universal trigger value or prophylactic platelet transfusions is not recommended as a rule.
  • Tranexamic acid 500-1000 mg times 3-4 daily orally (or intravenously if severe bleedings) can be used for patients that are thrombocytopenic and actively bleeding. 

Recommendation:

Recommendation grade C, evidence level IV. 

Immunosuppressive treatment (ATG +/- cyclosporine A) can be used to treat low- and intermediate-1-risk thrombocytopenic patients if they are considered good candidates for this treatment also for other parameters. 

10.3.1. Thrombopoietin (TPO) receptor agonists 

Thrombopoietin (TPO) receptor agonists romiplostim (Nplate) and eltrombopag (Revolade) are approved for the treatment of immunological thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP). They have also been tested in several clinical studies for thrombocytopenic MDS patients, both as monotherapy and in combination with myelosuppressive drugs, with the aim of less bleedings, less need for platelet transfusions and better overall outcome given the possibility to administer treatment in full doses without delays. A Cochrane review21 did not find enough evidence for recommending neither romiplostim nor eltrombopag in MDS.

10.4. Treatment and prevention of infections 

G-CSF treatment 

G-CSF injections can be considered as prophylaxis for severely neutropenic patients with recurring, serious infections or during infectious episodes. Published data are limited. It may be considered during azacitidine treatment. Long-acting G-CSF has not been evaluated in MDS and cannot be recommended.

11. Treatment of low-risk MDS 

11.1. Treatment of anemia with erythropoiesis stimulating agents 

Background

Treatment with EPO may improve hemoglobin levels and abrogate transfusion need in low-risk MDS. Addition of G-CSF has a synergistic effect on erythroid progenitor cells, and may induce responses in EPO refractory patients. EPO improves quality of life, and significantly prolongs time to transfusion requirement22. Retrospective studies indicate a survival benefit, with no impact on AML transformation. Darbepoetin (DAR) has longer half-life than EPO but a comparable efficacy. 

Indication for treatment

  • Low risk MDS (IPSS low or intermediate 1, IPSS-R very low, low or intermediate).
  • Symptomatic anemia, individual assessment, rarely reasonable to start treatment if hemoglobin level >100 g/l
  • Predictive score for response 0 or 1 point 

11.2. Table 8. Predictive score for response to erythropoiesis stimulating agents

Transfusion need Point S-EPO Point
<2 units RBC / month 0 <500 U/l 0
≥2 units RBC / month 1 ≥500 U/l 1
Predicted response: 0 point 74%, 1 point 23%, 2 points 7%

Response criteria for evaluation of erythroid response

  • Partial erythroid response (PER)
    • In transfusion-dependent patients: Stable anemia without need for transfusions
    • In patients with stable anemia: Increase of hemoglobin of ≥15 g/l
  • Complete erythroid response (CER)
    • Stable hemoglobin ≥115 g/l 

Positive criteria: (should be established prior to treatment!)

  • Verified MDS diagnosis
  • Less than 10% blasts
  • Score 0 or 1, according to the predictive model. Score 2 patients should not be treated.
  • No iron deficiency

Dosing of erythropoiesis stimulating agents

  • Target hemoglobin level <120 g/l
  • Induction phase:
    • EPO: Start with EPO 30 000 U/week (reduce initial dose if impaired renal function or low body weight). Increase to 30 000 twice weekly if no response after 8 weeks. Doses higher than 60 000 U/week are not recommended .
    • DAR: Start with 300 µg/14 days or 150 µg/week (reduce initial dose if impaired renal function or low body weight). Increase to 300 µg/week if no response after 8 weeks.
      • Aviod starting with 300 µg/week, since this may result in a rapid increase in Hb-level to supra normal levels for a period of time due to the extended half-life of DAR. Supra normal Hb-level is associated with increased risk of thrombosis.
    • G-CSF: Add if no response to 8 weeks of full dose EPO or DAR. Start with 300 µg (or equivalent) once weekly, alternatively 120 µg 2-3 times a week. Aim at a clear rise in neutrophil count (to 6-10 x 109/l). Maximum dose 300 µg x 3 times a week.
      • Long-acting G-CSF has not been evaluated in MDS and cannot be recommended.
    • Overdose: If Hb-levels increase above upper normal limit then interrupt the growth factors and consider venesectio; resume treatment at a lower dose when Hb falls below 120 g/l.
  • Maintenance phase: In case of CER, decrease the dose every 8 weeks, by reducing the dose per injection or increasing the dosing interval (in particular when using DAR). Median dose of EPO is 30 000 U/week, although some patients maintain their response on weekly doses of 5000-10 000 U.
    • Monitor ferritin regularly, consider supplementation of oral or iv iron if ferritin falls below upper normal limit, in particular when there are signs of functional iron deficiency (low MCHC in absence of microcytosis).
  • Lost response:
    • Evaluate for iron and vitamin deficiencies.
    • Increase the dose of EPO or DAR. If no response at maximum dose, then add G-CSF and evaluate after maximum of another 8-(16) weeks.
    • Bone marrow examination is recommended if response cannot be rescued or in case of clinical signs of disease progression (18-28 % of patients show signs of disease progression at time of lost response). 

Recommendation EPO

Recommendation grade A, evidence level Ib. 

Recommendation EPO + G-CSF

Recommendation grade A, evidence level Ib. 

Recommendation DAR±G-CSF

Recommendation grade B, evidence level IIa.

11.3. Immunosuppressive treatment 

Background

Several international studies have demonstrated response rates in the order of 30 % to immunosuppressive therapy (antithymocyte globulin (ATG) in some investigations combined with cyclosporine A (CyA)) in patients with MDS-SLD and MDS-MLD. Hypoplastic bone marrow, good and intermediate karyotype, HLA-DR15 positivity, young age, treatment within 2 years from diagnosis and short duration of red cell transfusion dependence23 predict for a response to immunosuppressive therapy in MDS patients. In aplastic anemia, ATGAMTM has been proven superior to other ATG, but this has not been investigated in MDS. Retrospectively, serum sickness was reported in 18 % and significantly higher with rabbit-ATG.

To date, there are no controlled data to support the addition of cyclosporine A to ATG treatment in MDS, although this combination has been shown to increase the response rate from 27 % to 51 % in a retrospective analysis23.

Decision-making and treatment with ATG 

Indications for ATG

  • Patients with MDS-SLD and MDS-MLD with symptomatic anemia and/or thrombocytopenia and/or neutropenia with increased susceptibility to infections. 

Positive criteria

  • Age: <70 years
  • IPSS LR or INT-1/IPSS-R very low, low and intermediate
  • Hypoplastic bone marrow
  • HLA-DR15 positivity will strengthen the indication especially in patients >50 years and with a long duration of transfusion dependency. 

Treatment

  • There are different ATG products available, and ATG should be used according to local traditions/experience:
  • horse ATG, Genzyme (LymphoglobulineTM); 15 mg/kg, d 1-5
  • rabbit ATG, Genzyme (ThymoglobulineTM); 3.75 mg/kg d. 1-5
  • rabbit ATG, Fresenius (ATG-FreseniusTM); 20 mg/kg, d. 1-3
  • horse ATG, Pfizer (ATGAMTM); 40 mg/kg, d 1-4
  • Prednisolone: During treatment with ATG, we recommend the addition of prednisolone day 1-24 (1 mg/kg/day d 1-10), then tapering the dose for the following 14 days until a complete stop.
  • Prophylaxis with sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim for 6 months is recommended.
  • Consider prophylaxis with fluconazole and acyclovir. 

Note: Late response may be observed after treatment with ATG/CyA. Response evaluation has to wait until 3-9 (3-6) months after start of treatment. 

Recommendation ATG

Recommendation grade B, evidence level Ib. 

Cyclosporine A treatment

  • It is up to the treating physician to decide whether to include CyA, as maintenance treatment in the immunosuppressive treatment. No sufficient published evidence for MDS
  • In case of contraindications to ATG, therapy with cyclosporine A alone can be tried. Dosage according to local recommendations (serum CyA around 200 ng/ml is recommended, adjust according to creatinine levels). 

Recommendation CyA

Recommendation grade B, evidence level III.

11.4. Lenalidomide 

Lenalidomide is an immunomodulatory drug that targets the E3 ubiquitin ligase cereblon and induces drug-dependent degradation of specific substrates modulates that are important for MDS cell survival. In transfusion dependent patients with lower risk MDS with del(5q) 43-56% achieve transfusion-independency and 23-57% show cytogenetic response. The response rates are higher with 10 mg/day 21/28 days compared to 5 mg continuous dosing, without added toxicity. Grade III-IV neutropenia and thrombocytopenia is seen in around 50% of patients. The response duration is around 2 years. The 5 year cumulative incidence of AML in treated patients is approximately 35%. Presence of TP53 mutation or marrow progenitors with strong p53 staining is associated with increased risk of progression24. 

Decision-making and treatment considerations

  • Eligible patients
    • Lower risk MDS with isolated del(5q) that have failed EPO or are not considered candidates according to the predictive model
    • No p53 alteration (TP53 mutation by deep sequencing of presence of >2% of marrow cells with strong p53 staining); such patients should be evaluated for alternative treatments due to their adverse prognosis and lenalidomide should only be considered in frail patients where no suitable alternative is available
  • Non eligible patients
    • Candidates for allo SCT; if lenalidomide is given in selected transplant candidates it should only be in the absence of p53 alterations, with careful monitoring for signs of disease progressions of disease progression.
  • Dosing
    • Repeated courses of 10 mg daily for 21 days followed by a 7 day break.
    • In elderly frail patients or patients with renal impairment consider 5 mg 21 of 28 days.
  • Prior to lenalidomide treatment, patients should be informed about the increased risk of other malignancies observed in multiple myeloma patients
  • Lenalidomide is not recommended for non del(5q) MDS or advanced MDS, unless in a clinical trial
  • Sexually active, fertile patients must use effective contraception 

Recommendation Lenalidomide

Recommendation grade A, evidence level 1b.

12. Allogeneic stem cell transplantation (SCT) in MDS 

Background

Allogeneic stem cell transplantation is the only known curative treatment option in patients with MDS 25. Published registry data for MDS show disease free survival rates between 35 and 40 %, transplant related mortality (TRM) between 5-20 % depending on donor type, and relapse rates (RR) 20-30 % 26,27. Several non-randomized studies have compared reduced intensity conditioning (RIC) transplantation with conventional myeloablative conditioning (MAC) transplantation  26-28. Most of the studies describe similar overall survival. The causes of treatment failure, however, are different with more relapses in RIC SCT patients, but higher TRM in patients receiving MAC. Results have improved during the last decade and more elderly patients have been possible to transplant due to better matched unrelated donors and with the introduction of RIC and reduced toxicity conditioning (RTC). Promising results have been described with the RTC-regimen Treosulfan-Fludarabine with a reduced RR compared to standard RIC without a corresponding higher TRM compared to conventional MAC. In the study by Ruutu et al of 45 MDS –patients the 2 years relapse rate was 16 % , the non-relapse mortality 17 % and the OS 71 % 29

Poor risk factors for TRM:

  • High age
  • Advanced disease stage
  • Therapy related MDS
  • Sub optimally matched unrelated donor 

Risk factors for relapse:

  • High age
  • Advanced disease stage
  • Poor risk cytogenetics.
  • Disease duration
  • Severe marrow fibrosis 30.
  • Somatic mutations in ASXL1, RUNX1 and TP53, EZH2 and ETV6 seem to be independent prognostic factors. 

Large retrospective studies have found that the percentage of bone marrow blasts at the time of transplantation significantly influences on prognosis, but selection bias and the mortality related to cytoreduction should be taken into account31

Decision making and treatment 

Indications (sibling or unrelated)

  • Age: All fit patients without comorbidities should be considered for allogeneic SCT. The indication should be assessed in association with donor availability, eventual co-morbid conditions and functional status (see comorbidity index).
  • IPSS INT-1, INT-2, and HR. In INT-1, IPSS-R can help to identify candidates for stem cell transplantation. Somatic mutations should in some cases be considered. Poor risk factors may be identified in lower risk and intermediate risk patients, indicating a need for an early SCT. 

12.1. Cytoreductive chemotherapy prior to SCT in patients with intermediate and high risk (according to IPSS-R), high risk MDS (according to IPSS) and MDS/AML

Cytoreductive therapy is usually given before SCT, but the value is not established due to lack of randomized trials and conclusive retrospective data25,28-30. However, induction chemotherapy significantly increases the risk of mortality and morbidity, which may prevent SCT.

  • Intermediate risk patients according to IPSS-R with increasing blast counts > 10 % should be considered for cytoreductive therapy.
  • Treatment should be determined in close collaboration with the local transplant team and usually involves azacitidine or AML like chemotherapy. 

Decision making

  • At diagnosis always consider if the patient is a candidate for allogeneic stem cell transplantation. It is not recommended to wait for significant disease progression before a decision about allogeneic transplantation is taken.
  • In younger patients consider the possibility of underlying rare familial syndromes (Fanconi, telomere-associated disorders) that may have implications for the choice of conditioning regimen.
  • Prior to decision-making regarding allogeneic transplantation, the patient should be thoroughly informed by his/her physician about benefits and risks with transplantation. Any patient must be individually evaluated and should be discussed by the caretaking physician and the transplant unit.
  • Evaluate patient for potential comorbidities (according to Sorror, Blood 2013, see next page).
  • In case of decision to transplant – proceed immediately with HLA typing and family work-up. Even potential family donors should be considered as potentially suffering (yet asymptomatic) from the same rare (possibly familial) disorder as the patient and to be screened for it if suspected.
  • If no sibling available, search for unrelated donor.
  • Other alternative donors (cord blood graft or haploidentical graft) might be considered depending on age, disease, and co-morbidity.
  • All transplant related procedures (conditioning, immunosuppression and supportive care) should be performed according to local guidelines. However, it is recommended to use a limited number of conditioning regimens. The selection of regimens should be discussed within each country with the transplant teams. 

Recommendation regarding allogeneic SCT

Recommendation grade B, evidence level IIb. 

Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation comorbidity index (HCT-CI) 

Based on Cox proportional hazard analysis of specific comorbidities in 1055 patients receiving allogeneic SCT at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle (294 RIC and 761 myeloablative), a Comorbidity Index was constructed that has been shown in many (but not all studies) to predict non-relapse mortality and survival. The HCT-CI has been updated and is available on the web (http://www.hctci.org/) 32. It is recommended to evaluate a potential transplantation candidate with HCT-CI prior to referral. The higher the HCT-CI, the higher is the risk for non-relapse mortality (transplantation related mortality) and the lower the overall survival. It has also been suggested that Karnofsky scores together with HCT-CI gives better prediction on the risk for TRM than either used alone. 

Table 9. HCT-CI 

Comorbidity

Definition of comorbidity

HCT-CI

weighted score

Arrhythmia

Atrial fibrillation or flutter, sick sinus syndrome, or ventricular arrhythmias

1

Cardiac

Coronary artery disease, § congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction, or EF ≤ 50%

1

Inflammatory bowel disease

Crohn disease or ulcerative colitis

1

Diabetes

Requiring treatment with insulin or oral hypoglycemic but not diet alone

1

Cerebrovascular disease

Transient ischemic attack or cerebrovascular accident

1

Psychiatric disturbance

Depression or anxiety requiring psychiatric consult or treatment

1

Hepatic, mild 

Chronic hepatitis, bilirubin > ULN to 1.5 x ULN, or AST/ALT > ULN to 2.5 x ULN

1

Obesity 

Patients with a body mass index > 35 kg/m2

1

Infection

Requiring continuation of antimicrobial treatment after day 0 

1

Rheumatologic 

SLE, RA, polymyositis, mixed CTD, or polymyalgia rheumatica

2

Peptic ulcer 

Requiring treatment

2

Moderate/severe renal 

Serum creatinine > 2 mg/dL (178 mmol/l), on dialysis, or prior renal transplantation 

2

Moderate pulmonary 

DLco and/or FEV1 66%-80% or dyspnea on slight activity

2

Prior solid tumor 

Treated at any time point in the patient's past history, excluding non-melanoma skin cancer 

3

Heart valve disease

Except mitral valve prolapse

3

Severe pulmonary

DLCO and/or FEV1≤ 65% or dyspnea at rest or requiring oxygen

3

Moderate/severe hepatic 

Liver cirrhosis, bilirubin > 1.5 x ULN, or AST/ALT > 2.5 x ULN

3

 

 SUM

__

 

EF indicates ejection fraction; ULN, upper limit of normal; SLE, systemic lupus erythmatosis; RA, rheumatoid arthritis; CTD, connective tissue disease; DLCO, diffusion capacity of carbon monoxide

13. Treatment of high-risk MDS and MDS/AML in patients not eligible for allogeneic stem cell transplantation

Patients may refuse to undergo transplantation or not be eligible for allogeneic stem cell transplantation due to lack of a compatible donor, comorbidities or advanced age precluding transplantation.  

13.1. Azacitidine  

Background

Azacitidine is approved for treatment of IPSS INT-2 and HR MDS and MDS/AML with 20-30 % blasts in patients not eligible for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Azacitidine is also approved for treatment of AML with <30% blasts in patients not eligible for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

A randomized phase III study of patients with advanced MDS not primarily eligible for curative treatment (SCT), compared azacitidine to best standard of care (BSC), where the treating physician could choose between best supportive care only, best supportive care with low dose cytarabine or best supportive care with AML-like chemotherapy33. The study demonstrated a significant improvement in overall survival with azacitidine (24 vs 15 months, p=0.0001) and time to AML transformation (24 vs 12 months, p=0.004). Twenty-nine percent of azacitidine treated patients responded with CR or PR. The benefit of azacitidine compared to BSC has also been proven in sub group analyses of patients >75 years of age, and for AML with 20-30 % marrow blasts (former RAEB-t)33-39. A total of 50% responded (CR, PR and hematological improvement = HI) to azacitidine-treatment and first response was seen in 91% of the responders within 6 cycles and best response was seen in 48% of the responders within 12 cycles, underscoring the importance of continuing treatment even if no response can be observed after a few courses34,40. Of importance is that even patients with HI only, also had an OS benefit compared to BSC i.e. CR/PR is not a prerequisite for azacitidine-treatment benefit (paradigm shift)33,40,41..

Two recent publications suggest that azacitidine treatment as a bridging therapy to allogeneic SCT is feasible and does not seem to alter the post-transplant prognosis42,43

Based on these findings, azacitidine is generally recommended as first choice for HR-MDS and MDS/AML (with 20-30 % blasts) unless the patient is young with good prognostic features for response to AML-like chemotherapy. 

Decision making and treatment  

Indication

  • Mainly indicated in patients who are not candidates for curative treatment, although azacitidine can also be considered when choosing bridging therapy prior to allogeneic SCT.
  • MDS IPSS INT-2 and High (in rare instances in INT-1 with severe cytopenias, where all other potential treatment modalities have failed).
  • MDS/AML with 20-30 % blasts.
  • Expected survival exceeding 3 months. 

Azacitidine treatment

  • Azacitidine 75 mg/m2 sc d 1-7 repeated every 28 days. (alternative dosing schedules can be considered: 100 mg/m2 sc d 1-5 or 75 mg/m2 sc d 1-5 + 8-9).
  • Continue treatment unless obvious signs of progression. Obvious signs of improvement are rarely observed after only 1 to 2 courses of treatment.
  • Myelosuppression is very common especially during the first courses and should not lead to un-necessary pausing or dose reductions unless threatening cytopenic complications or intolerance. The use of G-CSF and/or prophylactic antibiotics could be considered.
  • Evaluate response (bone marrow assessment) after 6 courses unless there is overt progression or indications of overdosing earlier. If SCT is planned, evaluate after 3 cycles or earlier if progression is suspected. Allow sufficient time (5-6 weeks) after last course before marrow evaluation (include biopsy), to avoid azacitidine induced hypoplasia/marrow suppression at time of evaluation.
  • In case of response, recovery of peripheral blood values may be delayed due to suppressive effects of azacitidine. It may be useful to make an 8 weeks pause after cycle 6 to see if recovery occurs.
  • It is generally recommended to continue treatment until clear signs of loss of response or progression. Fragile and elderly patients may not tolerate treatment and may experience treatment induced marrow suppression. In such case the dose can be decreased or the dose interval increased to 5 weeks. 

Recommendation

Recommendation grade A, evidence level 1b.  

13.2. AML like chemotherapy 

Background

A number of studies have been published where a total of more than 1100 patients with HR-MDS or MDS-AML have been treated with different combinations of induction chemotherapy44-50. Only few studies were randomized, and then often with the purpose to study the effect of G-CSF or GM-CSF in combination with chemotherapy. All studies taken together showed a median complete remission (CR) rate of 43 % (range: 18-74 %), and overall survival (OS) varying between 6-21 months. Between 8-27 % of the patients died within the first month of treatment. Patients with normal LDH and/or WBC <4x109/l and absence of poor risk cytogenetics had better CR rates. In some studies, duration of antecedent MDS was inversely related to achievement of CR. CR durations are generally short and there is no evidence, that AML like chemotherapy alters the natural history of MDS, i.e. overall survival is not affected by the treatment. There are no data to support that high dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell support is superior to AML like chemotherapy51,52. Hence, no recommendation can be made as to the use of autologous stem cell transplantation in younger HR-MDS and MDS-AML patients.   

Decision making and treatment 

Indication for AML like chemotherapy

Consider younger patients with high-risk MDS (IPSS INT-2 or HR), IPSS-R intermediate and MDS-AML

  • Remission induction of younger patients prior to allogeneic SCT.
  • In patients not eligible for allogeneic SCT if
    • good prognostic features for CR, i.e. normal s-LDH and/or WBC <4.0 x109/L, good or intermediate risk cytogenetics.
    • deemed to tolerate induction chemotherapy. 

In elderly patients with high-risk MDS (IPSS INT-2 or HR) and MDS-AML (less than 30 % blasts),

  • Azacitidine is recommended as first choice.
  • If azacitidine has failed, AML like chemotherapy can be attempted in patients in good performance status, without comorbidities and with good prognostic features for achievement of CR.   

Choice of induction therapy

Based on efficacy and toxicity data, it is recommended that: 

  • Patients are treated with standard AML induction chemotherapy according to local protocols.
  • In cases where CR is not reached after one induction course, a second identical induction course is indicated, provided the first one significantly reduced the bone marrow blast cell count and was not too toxic.
  • NB: it is not uncommon that a CR is reached late, 6-10 weeks after induction chemotherapy. This probably reflects the reduced number of remaining ‘normal’ stem cells present in MDS.  

Recommendation AML like chemotherapy:

Recommendation grade B, evidence level IIa.    

13.3. Low dose chemotherapy  

Background

There is insufficient evidence to recommend routine use of low-dose chemotherapy, since there are no data showing a beneficial effect on survival or transformation to AML in unselected groups of patients. However, in individual patients low-dose chemotherapy with melphalan or Ara-C may be used to reduce high white blood cell counts as well as bone-marrow blast counts, and to improve pancytopenia in MDS. 

Melphalan

Three small phase 2 studies in high-risk MDS patients report a response rate of up to 30 % in selected patients, i.e. improved blood cell counts and reduced/abolished transfusion need. The toxicity was mild53-55.

  • Suggested indication: Symptomatic high risk MDS and MDS/AML patients with a normal karyotype and a hypo/normocellular bone marrow.
  • Dosage: 2 mg/day until response (usually 8 weeks) or progression.  

Recommendation

Recommendation grade B, evidence level IIb 

Low-dose cytosine arabinoside

One large randomized study comparing low dose cytosine arabinoside (LDAC) and supportive care in predominantly high-risk MDS patients showed a response rate of approximately 30 % in the LDAC arm, but no benefit in terms of overall survival and transformation to AML56-58. Fatal hematological toxicity at a frequency of up to 19 % was reported for LDAC. Ara-C has in a subgroup analysis of the Aza 001 trial been shown to be inferior to azacitidine33.

  • Suggested indication: Symptomatic cytopenia in individual cases of high-risk MDS. A predictive model for the clinical response to LDAC suggests that a low platelet number and chromosomal aberrations at diagnosis indicate a low response rate.
  • Dosage: Ara-C 10-30 mg/m2/day sc, for 2-8 weeks. Maintenance treatment might be given to responders.  

Recommendation 

Recommendation grade A, evidence level Ib.

14. Chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML) 

14.1. Background

Chronic myelomonocytic leukemia is a rare disease with an incidence of 3/100.000/year in the population > 60 years, male: female ratio is 2:1, median age at presentation is 65-75 years. 15-20 % transform to AML. The disease has both myeloproliferative and myelodysplastic features. In 1994, the FAB group proposed to separate CMML in a proliferative form (CMML-MP) with white cell counts >13 x 109/L, and a dysplastic form (CMML-MD) with white cell counts below 13 x 109 /L. The WHO 2016 classification divides CMML into three groups based on the number of blasts: CMML-0: < 2 % blasts (including promonocytes) in PB and < 5 % blasts (including promonocytes) in BM), CMML-1: 2-4 % blasts (including promonocytes) in PB and 5-9 % blasts (including promonocytes) in BM), CMML-2: 5-19 % blasts (including promonocytes) in PB and 10-19 % blasts (including promonocytes) in BM). Diagnostic criteria (according to WHO 2016): See Table 3. 

In 20-40 % of cases, clonal abnormalities can be found, but none is specific for CMML. TET2 mutations have been reported in 46 % of the CMML cases, but with no certain effect on the prognosis. JAK2 mutations can be seen, especially in the proliferative variant. SRSF2 mutations are seen in 40-45 % and ASXL1 mutations in 50 % of the patients and both mutations seem to confer a worse prognosis. 

Different scoring systems have been proposed. IPSS does not include CMML with white cell counts >12 x 10/L. Kantarjian et al have suggested an IPSS model that also includes secondary MDS and CMML with a high white cell count. Poor prognostic factors were poor performance status, higher age, thrombocytopenia, anemia, increased bone marrow blasts, leukocytosis, chromosome 7 or complex (≥3) abnormalities, and prior transfusions. 

CMML specific scoring system (CPSS, Such et al59), Table 10, defines 4 important prognostic factors including WHO subtype, FAB subtype, CMML-specific cytogenetic risk classification and transfusion dependency. Patients could be divided into 4 risk groups differing in OS and AML evolution; low risk (0 points), intermediate-1 (1 point), intermediate-2 (2-3 points) and high risk (4-5 points). The median overall survival (OS) for low, intermediate-1, intermediate-2 and high risk were: 61, 31, 15 and 9 months. 

14.2. Table 10. CPSS score 

Prognostic variable

Points

 

0

                         1                                        2

Blasts (%)

<10 % in BM and < 5 % in PB

10-19 % in BM or 5-19 % in PB

White cell count

 Up to 13 x 109/L

               > 13 x 109/L

Karyotype°

Low risk

               Intermediate                         High risk

Transfusion dependency

No

                        Yes

       

Abbreviations: BM = bone marrow. PB = peripheral blood. ° Low risk: normal, -Y, del(5q), del(20q).  High risk: trisomy 8, complex (≥ 3 abnormalities) or chromosome 7 anomalies. Intermediate: other abnormalities. Red blood cell (RBC) ransfusion dependency defined as having 1 RBC transfusion every 8 weeks over a period of 4 months.

 

14.3. Table 11. CMML genetic score and CPSS-Mol

(Elena et al60) 
Variables and prognostic score values of the CMML genetic score

 

CPSS cytogenetic risk group

ASXL1

NRAS

RUNX1

SETBP1

Variable score

 

 

 

 

 

0

Low

Unmutated

Unmutated

Unmutated

Unmutated

1

Intermediate

Mutated

Mutated

Na

Mutated

2

High

Na

Na

Mutated

Na

Genetic risk group

Score

 

 

 

 

Low

0

 

 

 

 

Intermediate-1

1

 

 

 

 

Intermediate-2

2

 

 

 

 

High

≥3

 

 

 

 

Cytogenetic risk groups are defined according to Such et al59: low, normal, and isolated –Y; intermediate, other abnormalities; and high, trisomy 8, complex karyotype (≥3 abnormalities), and abnormalities of chromosome 7. 

Variables and prognostic score values of the CPSS-Mol

 

Genetic risk group

BM blasts

WBC count

RBC transfusion dependence

Variable score

 

 

 

 

0

Low

< 5 %

< 13x109/L

No

1

Intermediate-1

≥ 5 %

≥ 13x109/L

Yes

2

Intermediate-2

Na

Na

Na

3

High

Na

Na

Na

CPSS-Mol risk group

Score

 

 

 

Low

0

 

 

 

Intermediate-1

1

 

 

 

Intermediate-2

2

 

 

 

High

≥4

 

 

 

Genetic risk groups are defined as reported in the table above.

RBC transfusion dependency is defined according to Malcovati et al61 and Such et al.59 

This model was able to identify 4 risk groups with significantly different OS (HR = 2.69, P < .001) and cumulative incidence of leukemic evolution (HR = 3.84, P < .001) (median survival not reached, 64, 37, and 18 months; 48-month cumulative incidence of AML evolution of 0%, 3%, 21%, and 48% for the low, intermediate-1, intermediate-2, and high-risk group, respectively).60 The learning and validation cohorts consisted of 214 and 260 CMML patients, respectively60

14.4. Algorithm for treatment of patients with CMML 

Indications for treatment are fever, weight loss/wasting, cytopenia, symptomatic splenomegaly and disease progression with increasing blast counts. Other leukemic manifestations, such as gingival hyperplasia, leukemic infiltrates in the skin, low-grade DIC or serious DIC-fibrinolysis, may also be indications for treatment. 

  1. Consider allogeneic SCT for both CMML 1 and CMML 2.
  2. Patient with CMML 2 (10-19 % marrow blasts and promonocytes) and leukocyte count less than 13 x 109/L: Azacitidine.
  3. Patient with CMML 2 (10-19 % marrow blasts and promonocytes) and leukocyte count more than 13 x 109/L but not severely elevated leukocyte counts: Azacitidine treatment can be effective (less evidence for its benefit). Alternatively hydroxyurea or AML-like chemotherapy may be given.
  4. Patient with CMML 1 (5-9 % bone marrow blasts and promonocytes), leukocytes less than 13 x 109/L and high- risk cytogenetics: Treatment with azacitidine should be considered if candidate for allogeneic stem cell transplantation. Otherwise: Wait and see. Can be treated with EPO according to recommendations for other low risk MDS.
  5. Patient with CMML 0 (< 5 % blasts) or CMML 1 (5-9 % bone marrow blasts and promonocytes) and leukocytes more than 13 x 109/L: Hydroxyurea if symptomatic, EPO if anemia.  

14.5. Allogeneic stem cell transplantation in CMML 

Chronic myelomonocytic leukemia is a challenging disease being difficult to cure even with allogeneic stem cell transplantation. CPSS59 was validated in 209 transplanted patients by Duong and colleagues in 2015. There was a difference in 5 years disease-free survival (DFS) between low/int-1 and int-2/high risk CPSS (26 % vs 14 %) and OS (44 % vs 18 %) respectively. Mortality from higher CPSS scores was more often related to relapse than with lower scores. Other factors that significantly predicted outcome were performance status (better when > 90 %) and graft source (better for peripheral stem cells). The long term DFS was 26 % in the whole population and only 14 % in int2-/high-risk62. In an EBMT-study with 513 CMML patients 4-years, non-relapse mortality was 41 %, RR 32 %, relapse-free survival 27 % and OS 33 %63. The only significant prognostic factor for survival in a multivariate analysis was the presence of complete remission at HSCT. Therefore, transplantation early after diagnosis or after achievement of the best possible remission with either chemotherapy is recommended63

Somatic mutations also seem to be independent prognostic factors for CMML. An updated prognostic score of CPSS (CPSS mol) has recently been presented in Blood60. CPSS mol incorporates mutations in RUNX, NRAS, ASXL1 and SETBP in the prognostic system (Table 11). 

Indications for Allogeneic stem cell transplantation

  • Fit patients without severe comorbidities CMML-2 or CMML-1 with at least Int-1 score. Somatic mutations should be considered in some cases.
  • Patients with CMML-2 should receive therapy with the aim to obtain the best possible remission before SCT.

14.6. Azacitidine 

Background

Both FDA and EMEA have approved 5-azacitidine for treatment of CMML with 10-29% marrow blasts without a myeloproliferative disorder (leukocyte counts below 13 x 109/l).

One retrospective single center study investigated effects of azacitidine in CMML with leukocyte counts below and above 13 x 109/L. The OR was 39%, and it seemed to be better response in the MDS-CMML-group compared to the MPD-CMML-group; although the differences were not significant. 

Recommendation:

Recommendation grade A, evidence level 1b. 

14.7. Hydroxyurea 

One randomized trial with Hydroxyurea (HU) vs. Etoposide (VP 16) showed superiority in response (60 % vs.36 %). Survival in the HU arm was 20 months vs. 9 months in the VP 16 arm. The responses were, however, short.

Hydroxyurea is recommended as first-line treatment for elderly patients with a low (< 10 %) marrow blast count and for which the main aim is to reduce symptoms and not to prolong survival. For these patients side effects of HU are clearly milder than with azacitidine.

If the patient does not respond to HU or presents signs of progression of the disease, consider azacitidine as second-line treatment (see below). 

Recommendation:

Recommendation grade B, level IIa.

15. Treatment alternatives which are not commercially available or of uncertain usefulness 

We here report on a selected number of potential therapeutic candidates which are in clinical trials but not commercially available. We have also chosen to include information about drugs that we do not recommend, but that we know sometimes are used in MDS. 

15.1. Steroids 

Both prednisolone and anabolic steroids have been tried for MDS. Most reports are relatively old and very small, and there is no evidence of a significant response in terms of improved cytopenia. Generally, steroids should be avoided due to their side effects. According to clinical experience, MDS with a significant inflammatory component, as mirrored by high sedimentation rate, arthritis, and other inflammatory symptoms, may occasionally respond in terms of improved general symptoms to moderate doses of prednisolone. 

Recommendation: Generally not recommended.

Anecdotal non-validated reports have also shown that the thrombocytopenia of MDS occasionally may show a temporary response to anabolic steroids. 

Recommendation: No general recommendation. 

15.2. Decitabine 

Background

Decitabine is another hypomethylating agent that, similar to azacitidine causes demethylation of genes and re-expression of i.e. cell cycle control proteins. 

A large phase II study showed that decitabine had significant effects in high-risk MDS, and that major cytogenetic responses could be observed in 19/61 of responding patients. This has been confirmed in a recent randomized trial of decitabine vs best supportive care, which showed a trend towards longer median time to AML progression or death, although no significant survival advantage of decitabine treatment could be demonstrated. Higher complete response rates (using the less demanding modified IWG response criteria) ranging from 21 to 39 % using three different dose schedules of decitabine were obtained in a recent randomized single center trial.

With decitabine, best response was obtained after a median number of 3 courses, underscoring the importance of continuing hypomethylating treatment even if no response can be observed after a few courses. 

An EORTC study comparing low-dose decitabine to best supportive care in 233 higher risk  MDS patients age 60 years or older and ineligible for intensive chemotherapy showed, that decitabine treatment resulted in improvements of OS and AML-FS (nonsignificant), of PFS and AML transformation (significant) and of patient-reported QoL parameters. 

Status

Decitabine is approved by FDA for both MDS and AML. Decitabine is also commercially available in most countries in Europe for the treatment of AML in the elderly. 

Indication

  • IPSS INT-2 and High (in rare instances in INT-1 with severe cytopenias, where all other possible treatment modalities have failed), especially in case of intolerance to azacitidine.
  • Not candidates for curative treatment or induction chemotherapy. 

Treatment with Decitabine

  • Decitabine 15 mg/m2 by iv infusion over 3 hours every 8 hours, d 1-3 repeated every 6 weeks. Alternatively give 20 mg/m2, 1 hour intravenous infusion for 5 consecutive days, repeated every 4 weeks.
  • Evaluate response (bone marrow assessment) after 4-6 courses unless there is overt progression earlier.
  • Continue treatment until progression, even in the absence of hematological improvement. 

Recommendation: Not recommended for treatment of MDS, unless azacitidine intolerance. 

16. Ongoing MDS trials within the Nordic Region (including trials of the Nordic MDS Group)

 See www.nmds.org  

17. Disclosure statement 

  • AOK: Covered congress/travel expenses by Celgene, Advisory board - Celgene
  • LC: Honorarium for lectures - Ariad
  • ID: Covered congress/travel expenses by Celgene, Advisory board - Celgene
  • FE: Expert statement for Celgene, congress/travel expenses covered by Amgen and Novartis
  • EE: None
  • LF: None
  • HG: Honoraria from Amgen and Celgene, Advisory board – Celgene, Advisory board Incyte
  • AG: None
  • KG: Covered congress/travel expenses by Celgene. Advisory board – Celgene. Advisory board Janssen.
  • MSH: None
  • MJ: Research grant from Celgene. Honorarium for lectures from Novartis
  • LK: None
  • EHL: Research grant for clinical trials Celgene. Advisory board - Celgene
  • PL: None
  • JN: None
  • LN: Honorarium for lectures from Celgene and Novartis
  • AP: None
  • EP: None
  • KRJ: Covered congress/travel expenses, Advisory board - Celgene and Novartis,
  • Honorarium for lectures/meeting chairperson - Celgene
  • LS: None

18. Table 12. Genes frequently mutated in MDS 

Gene

Function

Target regions

Types of pathogenic variants

Main hotspots

Mutational frequency4

Mutational frequency5

Comment

Ref.

ASXL1

Chromatin modification

Exon 13

Nonsense and frame-shift variants

p.E635fs*; p.G646fs

23 %

14 %

Shortened survival8,64,65. Associated with unfavorable clinical outcome in all myeloid neoplasms (MDS, MDS/MPN, MPN).

 8,64-69

BCOR

Transcriptional regulation

Total coding region

Nonsense and frame-shift variants

 

4 %

5 %

Shortened survival70. Frequent in aplastic anemia71.

70-72

CALR

Signal transduction

Exon  9

Indels in exon 9

p.L367fs*46; p.K385fs*47

 

 

MPN

 

CSFR3

Signal transduction

Exon 14 and 17

Missense ( E14) and truncating (E17) variants

p.T618I

   

Strictly associated with CNL, found in a subset of patients with aCML.

73-76

CBL

Signal transduction

Exon 8 and 9

Multiple types of pathogenic variants 

 

5 %

4 %

Shortened survival8.

8,77-81

DNMT3A

DNA methylation

Exon 7 to 23

Multiple types of pathogenic variants mainly missense 

p.R882

13 %

11 %

Shortened survival82.

7,82

ETV6

Transcriptional regulation

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

PNT and ETS domains

2 %

1 %

Shortened survival8.

8,83,84

EZH2

Chromatin modification

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

SET-domain (p.R690)

6 %

5 %

Shortened survival8,64.

8,64,85,86

GATA1

Transcriptional regulation

Exon 2

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

 

 

 

AML in Down syndrome

 

GATA2

Transcriptional regulation

Exon 2 to 6

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

exon 5 and 6 (ZF1 and ZF2 domains)

   

Familial AML/MDS.

87-91

IDH1

DNA methylation

Exon 4

Missense variants

p.R132

3 %

3 %

Shortened survival92.

92-94

IDH2

DNA methylation

Exon 4

Missense variants

p.R140; pR172

4 %

4 %

 

92,93,95,96

JAK2

Signal transduction

Exon 14 and 12

V617F (E14) and in-frame del/ins or missense variants in (E12)

p.V617F

5 %

5 %

No impact on survival8,64.

8,64

KIT

Signal transduction

Exons 8-14, Exon 17

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

p.D816

1 %

2 %

AML

 

KRAS

Signal Transduction

Exon 2 and 3

Missense variants

p.D12, p.D13, p.D61

3 %

2 %

 

 

MPL

Signal transduction

Exon 10

Missense variant

p.W515L

3 %

2 %

MPN

 

NF1

Signal transduction

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants 

 

3 %

4 %

Familial cases, JMML

97

NPM1

Signal transduction

Exon 12

Insertions

p.W288fs*12

1 %

1 %

AML

 

NRAS

Signal Transduction

Exon 2 and 3

Missense variants

p.D12, p.D13,p.D61

4 %

3 %

Shortened survival

8

PHF6

Transcriptional regulation

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants 

Mainly truncating variants and missense variants in PHD2 domain (p.R274Q and p.K235E)

3 %

2 %

 

98

PTPN11

Signal transduction

Exons 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 12, and 13

Missense mutations

 N-SH2 and PTP domains

1 %

1 %

JMML and childhood AML (both acquired or inherited) but rare in adults with MDS (1%)

99-101

RAD21

Cohesin complex

 

Multiple types of pathogenic variants but mainly truncating variants

     

2% in myeloid malignancies and 8% in any one of all cohesin complex genes i.e. STAG1&2, RAD21, SMC1A and SMC3. Mutually exclusive.

102-104

RUNX1

Transcriptional regulation

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

 

11 %

8 %

Shortened survival8. Associated with unfavorable clinical outcome.

8,64,68

SETBP1

 

Exon 4

Missense variants

p.S867;p.D868; p.S869; p.G870; p.I871

4%-9%

 

Associated with poor overall survival and high risk of leukaemic evolution

69,105-109

SF3B1

RNA splicing

Exons 11 to 16

Missense variants

p.K700; p.K666; p.H662;p.H662;p.R625; pE622

33 %

25 %

Longer survival110.
No impact on survival64,111. Associated with good overall survival and low risk of leukemic evolution.

107,112-116

SMC1A

Cohesin complex

Exons 2, 11, 16 + 17

Mainly missense variants

     

<1% in myeloid malignancies and 8% in any one of all cohesin complex genes i.e. STAG1&2, RAD21, SMC1A and SMC3. Mutually exclusive.

102-104

SMC3

Cohesin complex

Exons 10, 13, 19, 23, 25 + 28

Multiple types of pathogenic variants 

 

 

 

2% in myeloid malignancies and 8% in any one of all cohesin complex genes i.e. STAG1&2, RAD21, SMC1A and SMC3. Mutually exclusive.

102-104

SRSF2

RNA-splicing

Exon 1

In-frame deletions and missense variants

p.P95_R102del; p.P95

18 %

15 %

Shortened survival112,115,117.
No impact on survival64. Associated with poor overall survival and high risk of leukaemic evolution.

112,113,115-124

STAG2

Cohesin complex

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants, mainly truncating variants

 

8 %

5 %

2% in myeloid malignancies and 8% in any one of all cohesin complex genes i.e. STAG1&2, RAD21, SMC1A and SMC3. Mutually exclusive.

Shortened survival104

TET2

DNA methylation

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

 

36 %

26 %

No impact on survival8,64,125. Shortened survival after transplant7. No impact on overall survival, may predict response to hypomethylating agents.

35,125-131

TP53

DNA repair

Exon 3 to 11

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

 

6 %

5% (17% in del(5q))

Shortened survival8,64 after transplant127. Poor response

8,64,68,127,132,133

U2AF1

RNA splicing

Exon 2 and 6

Missense variants

p.S34; p.R156; p.Q157

8 %

6 %

No impact on survival64.
Shortened surviva107l. Associated with high risk of leukemic evolution.

112,115,123,134,135

WT1

DNA methylation

Exon 7 and 9

Multiple types of pathogenic variants

 

1 %

1 %

AML

 

ZRSR2

RNA splicing

Total coding region

Multiple types of pathogenic variants, mainly truncating variants.

 

8 %

5 %

No impact on survival115. Shortened survival in ZRSR2mut/TET2wt.112

112,115,116,136

 

19. Table 13.  Main hereditary myeloid malignancy syndromes

Syndrome

Gene

Ref.:

Thrombocytopenia 2

ANKRD26

137

Thrombocytopenia 5

ETV6

138

FPD/AML

RUNX1

139-141

Familial AML with mutated DDX41

DDX41

142

Familial AML with
mutated CEBPA mutation

CEBPA

143

Familial MDS/AML with
GATA2 mutation

GATA2

144,145

Myeloid neoplasms with germline predisposition

ATG2B/GSKIP

146,147

Familial aplastic anemia
with SRP72 mutation

SRP72

148

Telomere syndromes with familial MDS/AL presentation

TERC, TERT

149,150

Telomere syndromes

ACD, CTC1, DKC1, NHP2, NOP10, PARN, RTEL1, TINF2, WRAP53

150,151

Fanconi Anemia

Fanconi genes

152

Diamond-Blackfan Anemia (DBA)

Ribosomal proteins (16 genes), GATA1 and TSR2

153

Shwachman-Diamond Syndrome.

SBDS

154,155

Severe Congenital Neutropenia (SCN)

CSF3R, HAX1, G6PC3, GFI1 and WAS

156,157

Congenital Amegakaryocytic Thrombocytopenia (CAMT)

MPL

158

Myeloproliferative neoplasms with germline RBBP6 mutation

RBBP6

159

Li Fraumeni syndrome

TP53

160,161

Syndrome of cytopenia, immunodeficiency, MDS and neurological symptoms

Predisposition to MDS with monosomy 7/del7(7q)

SAMD9L

162-164

20. References 

  1. Greenberg PL, Tuechler H, Schanz J, et al. Cytopenia levels for aiding establishment of the diagnosis of myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood. 2016;128:2096-2097.
  2. Haase D. Cytogenetic features in myelodysplastic syndromes. Ann Hematol. 2008;87:515-526.
  3. Arber DA, Orazi A, Hasserjian R, et al. The 2016 revision to the World Health Organization classification of myeloid neoplasms and acute leukemia. Blood. 2016;127:2391-2405.
  4. Haferlach T, Nagata Y, Grossmann V, et al. Landscape of genetic lesions in 944 patients with myelodysplastic syndromes. Leukemia. 2014;28:241-247.
  5. Papaemmanuil E, Gerstung M, Malcovati L, et al. Clinical and biological implications of driver mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood. 2013;122:3616-3627; quiz 3699.
  6. Jadersten M, Saft L, Pellagatti A, et al. Clonal heterogeneity in the 5q- syndrome: p53 expressing progenitors prevail during lenalidomide treatment and expand at disease progression. Haematologica. 2009;94:1762-1766.
  7. Bejar R. Clinical and genetic predictors of prognosis in myelodysplastic syndromes. Haematologica. 2014;99:956-964.
  8. Bejar R, Stevenson K, Abdel-Wahab O, et al. Clinical effect of point mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes. N Engl J Med. 2011;364:2496-2506.
  9. Bejar R. Implications of molecular genetic diversity in myelodysplastic syndromes. Curr Opin Hematol. 2017;24:73-78.
  10. Heuser M, Thol F, Ganser A. Clonal Hematopoiesis of Indeterminate Potential. Dtsch Arztebl Int. 2016;113:317-322.
  11. Greenberg P, Cox C, LeBeau MM, et al. International scoring system for evaluating prognosis in myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood. 1997;89:2079-2088.
  12. Greenberg PL, Tuechler H, Schanz J, et al. Revised international prognostic scoring system for myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood. 2012;120:2454-2465.
  13. Della Porta MG, Malcovati L, Strupp C, et al. Risk stratification based on both disease status and extra-hematologic comorbidities in patients with myelodysplastic syndrome. Haematologica. 2011;96:441-449.
  14. Malcovati L, Papaemmanuil E, Ambaglio I, et al. Driver somatic mutations identify distinct disease entities within myeloid neoplasms with myelodysplasia. Blood. 2014;124:1513-1521.
  15. Karimi M, Nilsson C, Dimitriou M, et al. High-throughput mutational screening adds clinically important information in myelodysplastic syndromes and secondary or therapy-related acute myeloid leukemia. Haematologica. 2015;100:e223-225.
  16. Makishima H, Yoshizato T, Yoshida K, et al. Dynamics of clonal evolution in myelodysplastic syndromes. Nat Genet. 2017;49:204-212.
  17. Cheson BD, Greenberg PL, Bennett JM, et al. Clinical application and proposal for modification of the International Working Group (IWG) response criteria in myelodysplasia. Blood. 2006;108:419-425.
  18. Nilsson-Ehle H, Birgegard G, Samuelsson J, et al. Quality of life, physical function and MRI T2* in elderly low-risk MDS patients treated to a haemoglobin level of >/=120 g/L with darbepoetin alfa +/- filgrastim or erythrocyte transfusions. Eur J Haematol. 2011;87:244-252.
  19. Gattermann N, Finelli C, Porta MD, et al. Deferasirox in iron-overloaded patients with transfusion-dependent myelodysplastic syndromes: Results from the large 1-year EPIC study. Leuk Res. 2010;34:1143-1150.
  20. Taher ATO PS, Kouraklis A, Ruffo GB, Kattamis A, Goh AS, Cortoos A, Huang V, Weill M, Herranz RM and Porter JB. . Improved patient-reported outcomes with a film-coated versus dispersible tablet formulation of deferasirox: results from the randomized, phase II E.C.L.I.P.S.E. study. . Blood. 2016;Abstract 2016 Session: 112.
  21. Desborough M, Estcourt LJ, Chaimani A, et al. Alternative agents versus prophylactic platelet transfusion for preventing bleeding in patients with thrombocytopenia due to chronic bone marrow failure: a network meta-analysis and systematic review. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2016;2016.
  22. Garelius HK, Johnston WT, Smith AG, et al. Erythropoiesis-stimulating agents significantly delay the onset of a regular transfusion need in nontransfused patients with lower-risk myelodysplastic syndrome. J Intern Med. 2016.
  23. Haider M, Al Ali N, Padron E, et al. Immunosuppressive Therapy: Exploring an Underutilized Treatment Option for Myelodysplastic Syndrome. Clin Lymphoma Myeloma Leuk. 2016;16 Suppl:S44-48.
  24. Saft L, Karimi M, Ghaderi M, et al. p53 protein expression independently predicts outcome in patients with lower-risk myelodysplastic syndromes with del(5q). Haematologica. 2014;99:1041-1049.
  25. Kekre N, Ho VT. Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation for myelofibrosis and chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. Am J Hematol. 2016;91:123-130.
  26. Luger SM, Ringden O, Zhang MJ, et al. Similar outcomes using myeloablative vs reduced-intensity allogeneic transplant preparative regimens for AML or MDS. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2012;47:203-211.
  27. Martino R, de Wreede L, Fiocco M, et al. Comparison of conditioning regimens of various intensities for allogeneic hematopoietic SCT using HLA-identical sibling donors in AML and MDS with <10% BM blasts: a report from EBMT. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2013;48:761-770.
  28. Shimoni A, Labopin M, Savani B, et al. Long-term survival and late events after allogeneic stem cell transplantation from HLA-matched siblings for acute myeloid leukemia with myeloablative compared to reduced-intensity conditioning: a report on behalf of the acute leukemia working party of European group for blood and marrow transplantation. J Hematol Oncol. 2016;9:118.
  29. Ruutu T, Volin L, Beelen DW, et al. Reduced-toxicity conditioning with treosulfan and fludarabine in allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation for myelodysplastic syndromes: final results of an international prospective phase II trial. Haematologica. 2011;96:1344-1350.
  30. Kroger N, Zabelina T, van Biezen A, et al. Allogeneic stem cell transplantation for myelodysplastic syndromes with bone marrow fibrosis. Haematologica. 2011;96:291-297.
  31. de Witte TM, Bowen D, Robin M, et al. Should patients with high-risk or transformed myelodysplastic syndrome proceed directly to allogeneic transplant without prior cytoreduction by remission-induction chemotherapy or hypomethylating agent therapy? Clin Lymphoma Myeloma Leuk. 2014;14 Suppl:S42-45.
  32. Sorror ML. How I assess comorbidities before hematopoietic cell transplantation. Blood. 2013;121:2854-2863.
  33. Fenaux P, Mufti GJ, Hellstrom-Lindberg E, et al. Efficacy of azacitidine compared with that of conventional care regimens in the treatment of higher-risk myelodysplastic syndromes: a randomized, open-label, phase III study. Lancet Oncol. 2009;10:223-232.
  34. Fenaux P, Gattermann N, Seymour JF, et al. Prolonged survival with improved tolerability in higher-risk myelodysplastic syndromes: azacitidine compared with low dose ara-C. Br J Haematol. 2010;149:244-249.
  35. Itzykson R, Kosmider O, Cluzeau T, et al. Impact of TET2 mutations on response rate to azacitidine in myelodysplastic syndromes and low blast count acute myeloid leukemias. Leukemia. 2011;25:1147-1152.
  36. Ravandi F, Issa JP, Garcia-Manero G, et al. Superior outcome with hypomethylating therapy in patients with acute myeloid leukemia and high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome and chromosome 5 and 7 abnormalities. Cancer. 2009;115:5746-5751.
  37. Seymour JF, Fenaux P, Silverman LR, et al. Effects of azacitidine compared with conventional care regimens in elderly (>/= 75 years) patients with higher-risk myelodysplastic syndromes. Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2010;76:218-227.
  38. Skead G, Govender D. Gene of the month: MET. J Clin Pathol. 2015;68:405-409.
  39. Tobiasson M, McLornan DP, Karimi M, et al. Mutations in histone modulators are associated with prolonged survival during azacitidine therapy. Oncotarget. 2016;7:22103-22115.
  40. Silverman LR, Fenaux P, Mufti GJ, et al. Continued azacitidine therapy beyond time of first response improves quality of response in patients with higher-risk myelodysplastic syndromes. Cancer. 2011;117:2697-2702.
  41. Santini V, Fenaux P, Mufti GJ, et al. Management and supportive care measures for adverse events in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes treated with azacitidine*. Eur J Haematol. 2010;85:130-138.
  42. Field T, Perkins J, Huang Y, et al. 5-Azacitidine for myelodysplasia before allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2010;45:255-260.
  43. Kim DY, Lee JH, Park YH, et al. Feasibility of hypomethylating agents followed by allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation in patients with myelodysplastic syndrome. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2012;47:374-379.
  44. Bennett JM, Young MS, Liesveld JL, et al. Phase II study of combination human recombinant GM-CSF with intermediate-dose cytarabine and mitoxantrone chemotherapy in patients with high-risk myelodysplastic syndromes (RAEB, RAEBT, and CMML): an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Study. Am J Hematol. 2001;66:23-27.
  45. Bernasconi P, Cavigliano PM, Genini E, et al. A complex translocation (5;7) in a patient with acute nonlymphocytic leukemia evolved from a myelodysplastic syndrome. Cancer Genet Cytogenet. 1998;105:182-186.
  46. de Witte T, Suciu S, Peetermans M, et al. Intensive chemotherapy for poor prognosis myelodysplasia (MDS) and secondary acute myeloid leukemia (sAML) following MDS of more than 6 months duration. A pilot study by the Leukemia Cooperative Group of the European Organisation for Research and Treatment in Cancer (EORTC-LCG). Leukemia. 1995;9:1805-1811.
  47. Hast R, Hellstrom-Lindberg E, Ohm L, et al. No benefit from adding GM-CSF to induction chemotherapy in transforming myelodysplastic syndromes: better outcome in patients with less proliferative disease. Leukemia. 2003;17:1827-1833.
  48. Knipp S, Hildebrand B, Kundgen A, et al. Intensive chemotherapy is not recommended for patients aged >60 years who have myelodysplastic syndromes or acute myeloid leukemia with high-risk karyotypes. Cancer. 2007;110:345-352.
  49. Fenaux P, Morel P, Rose C, Lai JL, Jouet JP, Bauters F. Prognostic factors in adult de novo myelodysplastic syndromes treated by intensive chemotherapy. Br J Haematol. 1991;77:497-501.
  50. Invernizzi R, Pecci A, Rossi G, et al. Idarubicin and cytosine arabinoside in the induction and maintenance therapy of high-risk myelodysplastic syndromes. Haematologica. 1997;82:9-12.
  51. de Witte T, Hermans J, Vossen J, et al. Haematopoietic stem cell transplantation for patients with myelo-dysplastic syndromes and secondary acute myeloid leukaemias: a report on behalf of the Chronic Leukaemia Working Party of the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT). Br J Haematol. 2000;110:620-630.
  52. de Witte T, Suciu S, Verhoef G, et al. Intensive chemotherapy followed by allogeneic or autologous stem cell transplantation for patients with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDSs) and acute myeloid leukemia following MDS. Blood. 2001;98:2326-2331.
  53. Denzlinger C, Bowen D, Benz D, Gelly K, Brugger W, Kanz L. Low-dose melphalan induces favourable responses in elderly patients with high-risk myelodysplastic syndromes or secondary acute myeloid leukaemia. Br J Haematol. 2000;108:93-95.
  54. Omoto E, Deguchi S, Takaba S, et al. Low-dose melphalan for treatment of high-risk myelodysplastic syndromes. Leukemia. 1996;10:609-614.
  55. Robak T, Szmigielska-Kaplon A, Urbanska-Rys H, Chojnowski K, Wrzesien-Kus A. Efficacy and toxicity of low-dose melphalan in myelodysplastic syndromes and acute myeloid leukemia with multilineage dysplasia. Neoplasma. 2003;50:172-175.
  56. Cheson BD, Simon R. Low-dose ara-C in acute nonlymphocytic leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes: a review of 20 years' experience. Semin Oncol. 1987;14:126-133.
  57. Hellstrom-Lindberg E, Robert KH, Gahrton G, et al. A predictive model for the clinical response to low dose ara-C: a study of 102 patients with myelodysplastic syndromes or acute leukaemia. Br J Haematol. 1992;81:503-511.
  58. Miller KB, Kim K, Morrison FS, et al. The evaluation of low-dose cytarabine in the treatment of myelodysplastic syndromes: a phase-III intergroup study. Ann Hematol. 1992;65:162-168.
  59. Such E, Germing U, Malcovati L, et al. Development and validation of a prognostic scoring system for patients with chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. Blood. 2013;121:3005-3015.
  60. Elena C, Galli A, Such E, et al. Integrating clinical features and genetic lesions in the risk assessment of patients with chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. Blood. 2016;128:1408-1417.
  61. Malcovati L, Germing U, Kuendgen A, et al. Time-dependent prognostic scoring system for predicting survival and leukemic evolution in myelodysplastic syndromes. J Clin Oncol. 2007;25:3503-3510.
  62. Duong HKea. Allogeneic Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation for Adult Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukemia. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 2015;21:S30–S31.
  63. Symeonidis A, van Biezen A, de Wreede L, et al. Achievement of complete remission predicts outcome of allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation in patients with chronic myelomonocytic leukaemia. A study of the Chronic Malignancies Working Party of the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation. Br J Haematol. 2015.
  64. Bejar R, Stevenson KE, Caughey BA, et al. Validation of a prognostic model and the impact of mutations in patients with lower-risk myelodysplastic syndromes. J Clin Oncol. 2012;30:3376-3382.
  65. Thol F, Friesen I, Damm F, et al. Prognostic significance of ASXL1 mutations in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes. J Clin Oncol. 2011;29:2499-2506.
  66. Gelsi-Boyer V, Trouplin V, Adelaide J, et al. Mutations of polycomb-associated gene ASXL1 in myelodysplastic syndromes and chronic myelomonocytic leukaemia. Br J Haematol. 2009;145:788-800.
  67. Boultwood J, Perry J, Pellagatti A, et al. Frequent mutation of the polycomb-associated gene ASXL1 in the myelodysplastic syndromes and in acute myeloid leukemia. Leukemia. 2010;24:1062-1065.
  68. Della Porta MG, Galli A, Bacigalupo A, et al. Clinical Effects of Driver Somatic Mutations on the Outcomes of Patients With Myelodysplastic Syndromes Treated With Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem-Cell Transplantation. J Clin Oncol. 2016.
  69. Patnaik MM, Lasho TL, Finke CM, et al. Predictors of survival in refractory anemia with ring sideroblasts and thrombocytosis (RARS-T) and the role of next-generation sequencing. Am J Hematol. 2016;91:492-498.
  70. Damm F, Chesnais V, Nagata Y, et al. BCOR and BCORL1 mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes and related disorders. Blood. 2013;122:3169-3177.
  71. Yoshizato T, Dumitriu B, Hosokawa K, et al. Somatic Mutations and Clonal Hematopoiesis in Aplastic Anemia. N Engl J Med. 2015;373:35-47.
  72. Babushok DV, Perdigones N, Perin JC, et al. Emergence of clonal hematopoiesis in the majority of patients with acquired aplastic anemia. Cancer Genet. 2015;208:115-128.
  73. Cui Y, Li B, Gale RP, et al. CSF3R, SETBP1 and CALR mutations in chronic neutrophilic leukemia. J Hematol Oncol. 2014;7:77.
  74. Maxson JE, Gotlib J, Pollyea DA, et al. Oncogenic CSF3R mutations in chronic neutrophilic leukemia and atypical CML. N Engl J Med. 2013;368:1781-1790.
  75. Pardanani A, Lasho TL, Laborde RR, et al. CSF3R T618I is a highly prevalent and specific mutation in chronic neutrophilic leukemia. Leukemia. 2013;27:1870-1873.
  76. Tefferi A, Thiele J, Vannucchi AM, Barbui T. An overview on CALR and CSF3R mutations and a proposal for revision of WHO diagnostic criteria for myeloproliferative neoplasms. Leukemia. 2014;28:1407-1413.
  77. Bacher U, Haferlach C, Schnittger S, Kohlmann A, Kern W, Haferlach T. Mutations of the TET2 and CBL genes: novel molecular markers in myeloid malignancies. Ann Hematol. 2010;89:643-652.
  78. Barresi V, Palumbo GA, Musso N, et al. Clonal selection of 11q CN-LOH and CBL gene mutation in a serially studied patient during MDS progression to AML. Leuk Res. 2010;34:1539-1542.
  79. Kao HW, Sanada M, Liang DC, et al. A high occurrence of acquisition and/or expansion of C-CBL mutant clones in the progression of high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome to acute myeloid leukemia. Neoplasia. 2011;13:1035-1042.
  80. Schwaab J, Ernst T, Erben P, et al. Activating CBL mutations are associated with a distinct MDS/MPN phenotype. Ann Hematol. 2012;91:1713-1720.
  81. Shiba N, Hasegawa D, Park MJ, et al. CBL mutation in chronic myelomonocytic leukemia secondary to familial platelet disorder with propensity to develop acute myeloid leukemia (FPD/AML). Blood. 2012;119:2612-2614.
  82. Walter MJ, Ding L, Shen D, et al. Recurrent DNMT3A mutations in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes. Leukemia. 2011;25:1153-1158.
  83. Wang Q, Dong S, Yao H, et al. ETV6 mutation in a cohort of 970 patients with hematologic malignancies. Haematologica. 2014;99:e176-178.
  84. Zhang MY, Churpek JE, Keel SB, et al. Germline ETV6 mutations in familial thrombocytopenia and hematologic malignancy. Nat Genet. 2015;47:180-185.
  85. Ernst T, Chase AJ, Score J, et al. Inactivating mutations of the histone methyltransferase gene EZH2 in myeloid disorders. Nat Genet. 2010;42:722-726.
  86. Nikoloski G, Langemeijer SM, Kuiper RP, et al. Somatic mutations of the histone methyltransferase gene EZH2 in myelodysplastic syndromes. Nat Genet. 2010;42:665-667.
  87. Collin M, Dickinson R, Bigley V. Haematopoietic and immune defects associated with GATA2 mutation. Br J Haematol. 2015;169:173-187.
  88. Hahn CN, Chong CE, Carmichael CL, et al. Heritable GATA2 mutations associated with familial myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. Nat Genet. 2011;43:1012-1017.
  89. Hsu AP, Sampaio EP, Khan J, et al. Mutations in GATA2 are associated with the autosomal dominant and sporadic monocytopenia and mycobacterial infection (MonoMAC) syndrome. Blood. 2011;118:2653-2655.
  90. Pasquet M, Bellanne-Chantelot C, Tavitian S, et al. High frequency of GATA2 mutations in patients with mild chronic neutropenia evolving to MonoMac syndrome, myelodysplasia, and acute myeloid leukemia. Blood. 2013;121:822-829.
  91. Wlodarski MW, Hirabayashi S, Pastor V, et al. Prevalence, clinical characteristics, and prognosis of GATA2-related myelodysplastic syndromes in children and adolescents. Blood. 2016;127:1387-1397; quiz 1518.
  92. Patnaik MM, Hanson CA, Hodnefield JM, et al. Differential prognostic effect of IDH1 versus IDH2 mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes: a Mayo Clinic study of 277 patients. Leukemia. 2012;26:101-105.
  93. Jin J, Hu C, Yu M, et al. Prognostic value of isocitrate dehydrogenase mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes: a retrospective cohort study and meta-analysis. PLoS One. 2014;9:e100206.
  94. Thol F, Weissinger EM, Krauter J, et al. IDH1 mutations in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes are associated with an unfavorable prognosis. Haematologica. 2010;95:1668-1674.
  95. DiNardo CD, Jabbour E, Ravandi F, et al. IDH1 and IDH2 mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes and role in disease progression. Leukemia. 2016;30:980-984.
  96. Lin CC, Hou HA, Chou WC, et al. IDH mutations are closely associated with mutations of DNMT3A, ASXL1 and SRSF2 in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes and are stable during disease evolution. Am J Hematol. 2014;89:137-144.
  97. Stieglitz E, Taylor-Weiner AN, Chang TY, et al. The genomic landscape of juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia. Nat Genet. 2015;47:1326-1333.
  98. Mori T, Nagata Y, Makishima H, et al. Somatic PHF6 mutations in 1760 cases with various myeloid neoplasms. Leukemia. 2016;30:2270-2273.
  99. Hugues L, Cave H, Philippe N, Pereira S, Fenaux P, Preudhomme C. Mutations of PTPN11 are rare in adult myeloid malignancies. Haematologica. 2005;90:853-854.
  100. Loh ML, Martinelli S, Cordeddu V, et al. Acquired PTPN11 mutations occur rarely in adult patients with myelodysplastic syndromes and chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. Leuk Res. 2005;29:459-462.
  101. Tartaglia M, Niemeyer CM, Fragale A, et al. Somatic mutations in PTPN11 in juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia, myelodysplastic syndromes and acute myeloid leukemia. Nat Genet. 2003;34:148-150.
  102. Kon A, Shih LY, Minamino M, et al. Recurrent mutations in multiple components of the cohesin complex in myeloid neoplasms. Nat Genet. 2013;45:1232-1237.
  103. Thol F, Bollin R, Gehlhaar M, et al. Mutations in the cohesin complex in acute myeloid leukemia: clinical and prognostic implications. Blood. 2014;123:914-920.
  104. Thota S, Viny AD, Makishima H, et al. Genetic alterations of the cohesin complex genes in myeloid malignancies. Blood. 2014;124:1790-1798.
  105. Fernandez-Mercado M, Pellagatti A, Di Genua C, et al. Mutations in SETBP1 are recurrent in myelodysplastic syndromes and often coexist with cytogenetic markers associated with disease progression. Br J Haematol. 2013;163:235-239.
  106. Inoue D, Kitaura J, Matsui H, et al. SETBP1 mutations drive leukemic transformation in ASXL1-mutated MDS. Leukemia. 2015;29:847-857.
  107. Makishima H, Yoshida K, Nguyen N, et al. Somatic SETBP1 mutations in myeloid malignancies. Nat Genet. 2013;45:942-946.
  108. Meggendorfer M, Bacher U, Alpermann T, et al. SETBP1 mutations occur in 9% of MDS/MPN and in 4% of MPN cases and are strongly associated with atypical CML, monosomy 7, isochromosome i(17)(q10), ASXL1 and CBL mutations. Leukemia. 2013;27:1852-1860.
  109. Piazza R, Valletta S, Winkelmann N, et al. Recurrent SETBP1 mutations in atypical chronic myeloid leukemia. Nat Genet. 2013;45:18-24.
  110. Papaemmanuil E, Cazzola M, Boultwood J, et al. Somatic SF3B1 mutation in myelodysplasia with ring sideroblasts. N Engl J Med. 2011;365:1384-1395.
  111. Patnaik MM, Lasho TL, Hodnefield JM, et al. SF3B1 mutations are prevalent in myelodysplastic syndromes with ring sideroblasts but do not hold independent prognostic value. Blood. 2012;119:569-572.
  112. Damm F, Kosmider O, Gelsi-Boyer V, et al. Mutations affecting mRNA splicing define distinct clinical phenotypes and correlate with patient outcome in myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood. 2012;119:3211-3218.
  113. Malcovati L, Papaemmanuil E, Bowen DT, et al. Clinical significance of SF3B1 mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes and myelodysplastic/myeloproliferative neoplasms. Blood. 2011;118:6239-6246.
  114. Mian SA, Smith AE, Kulasekararaj AG, et al. Spliceosome mutations exhibit specific associations with epigenetic modifiers and proto-oncogenes mutated in myelodysplastic syndrome. Haematologica. 2013;98:1058-1066.
  115. Thol F, Kade S, Schlarmann C, et al. Frequency and prognostic impact of mutations in SRSF2, U2AF1, and ZRSR2 in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes. Blood. 2012;119:3578-3584.
  116. Yoshida K, Sanada M, Shiraishi Y, et al. Frequent pathway mutations of splicing machinery in myelodysplasia. Nature. 2011;478:64-69.
  117. Wu SJ, Kuo YY, Hou HA, et al. The clinical implication of SRSF2 mutation in patients with myelodysplastic syndrome and its stability during disease evolution. Blood. 2012;120:3106-3111.
  118. Cui Y, Tong H, Du X, et al. Impact of TET2, SRSF2, ASXL1 and SETBP1 mutations on survival of patients with chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. Exp Hematol Oncol. 2015;4:14.
  119. Hong JY, Seo JY, Kim SH, et al. Mutations in the Spliceosomal Machinery Genes SRSF2, U2AF1, and ZRSR2 and Response to Decitabine in Myelodysplastic Syndrome. Anticancer Res. 2015;35:3081-3089.
  120. Kang MG, Kim HR, Seo BY, et al. The prognostic impact of mutations in spliceosomal genes for myelodysplastic syndrome patients without ring sideroblasts. BMC Cancer. 2015;15:484.
  121. Kim E, Ilagan JO, Liang Y, et al. SRSF2 Mutations Contribute to Myelodysplasia by Mutant-Specific Effects on Exon Recognition. Cancer Cell. 2015;27:617-630.
  122. Komeno Y, Huang YJ, Qiu J, et al. SRSF2 Is Essential for Hematopoiesis, and Its Myelodysplastic Syndrome-Related Mutations Dysregulate Alternative Pre-mRNA Splicing. Mol Cell Biol. 2015;35:3071-3082.
  123. Makishima H, Visconte V, Sakaguchi H, et al. Mutations in the spliceosome machinery, a novel and ubiquitous pathway in leukemogenesis. Blood. 2012;119:3203-3210.
  124. Zhang SJ, Rampal R, Manshouri T, et al. Genetic analysis of patients with leukemic transformation of myeloproliferative neoplasms shows recurrent SRSF2 mutations that are associated with adverse outcome. Blood. 2012;119:4480-4485.
  125. Smith AE, Mohamedali AM, Kulasekararaj A, et al. Next-generation sequencing of the TET2 gene in 355 MDS and CMML patients reveals low-abundance mutant clones with early origins, but indicates no definite prognostic value. Blood. 2010;116:3923-3932.
  126. Bejar R, Lord A, Stevenson K, et al. TET2 mutations predict response to hypomethylating agents in myelodysplastic syndrome patients. Blood. 2014;124:2705-2712.
  127. Bejar R, Stevenson KE, Caughey B, et al. Somatic mutations predict poor outcome in patients with myelodysplastic syndrome after hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation. J Clin Oncol. 2014;32:2691-2698.
  128. Busque L, Patel JP, Figueroa ME, et al. Recurrent somatic TET2 mutations in normal elderly individuals with clonal hematopoiesis. Nat Genet. 2012;44:1179-1181.
  129. Delhommeau F, Dupont S, Della Valle V, et al. Mutation in TET2 in myeloid cancers. N Engl J Med. 2009;360:2289-2301.
  130. Kosmider O, Gelsi-Boyer V, Cheok M, et al. TET2 mutation is an independent favorable prognostic factor in myelodysplastic syndromes (MDSs). Blood. 2009;114:3285-3291.
  131. Langemeijer SM, Kuiper RP, Berends M, et al. Acquired mutations in TET2 are common in myelodysplastic syndromes. Nat Genet. 2009;41:838-842.
  132. Sallman DA, Komrokji R, Vaupel C, et al. Impact of TP53 mutation variant allele frequency on phenotype and outcomes in myelodysplastic syndromes. Leukemia. 2016;30:666-673.
  133. Sebaa A, Ades L, Baran-Marzack F, et al. Incidence of 17p deletions and TP53 mutation in myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia with 5q deletion. Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2012;51:1086-1092.
  134. Graubert TA, Shen D, Ding L, et al. Recurrent mutations in the U2AF1 splicing factor in myelodysplastic syndromes. Nat Genet. 2011;44:53-57.
  135. Przychodzen B, Jerez A, Guinta K, et al. Patterns of missplicing due to somatic U2AF1 mutations in myeloid neoplasms. Blood. 2013;122:999-1006.
  136. Madan V, Kanojia D, Li J, et al. Aberrant splicing of U12-type introns is the hallmark of ZRSR2 mutant myelodysplastic syndrome. Nat Commun. 2015;6:6042.
  137. Babushok DV, Bessler M, Olson TS. Genetic predisposition to myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia in children and young adults. Leuk Lymphoma. 2016;57:520-536.
  138. Topka S, Vijai J, Walsh MF, et al. Germline ETV6 Mutations Confer Susceptibility to Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and Thrombocytopenia. PLoS Genet. 2015;11:e1005262.
  139. Beri-Dexheimer M, Latger-Cannard V, Philippe C, et al. Clinical phenotype of germline RUNX1 haploinsufficiency: from point mutations to large genomic deletions. Eur J Hum Genet. 2008;16:1014-1018.
  140. Jongmans MC, Kuiper RP, Carmichael CL, et al. Novel RUNX1 mutations in familial platelet disorder with enhanced risk for acute myeloid leukemia: clues for improved identification of the FPD/AML syndrome. Leukemia. 2010;24:242-246.
  141. Owen CJ, Toze CL, Koochin A, et al. Five new pedigrees with inherited RUNX1 mutations causing familial platelet disorder with propensity to myeloid malignancy. Blood. 2008;112:4639-4645.
  142. Lewinsohn M, Brown AL, Weinel LM, et al. Novel germ line DDX41 mutations define families with a lower age of MDS/AML onset and lymphoid malignancies. Blood. 2016;127:1017-1023.
  143. Smith ML, Cavenagh JD, Lister TA, Fitzgibbon J. Mutation of CEBPA in familial acute myeloid leukemia. N Engl J Med. 2004;351:2403-2407.
  144. Dickinson RE, Milne P, Jardine L, et al. The evolution of cellular deficiency in GATA2 mutation. Blood. 2014;123:863-874.
  145. Spinner MA, Sanchez LA, Hsu AP, et al. GATA2 deficiency: a protean disorder of hematopoiesis, lymphatics, and immunity. Blood. 2014;123:809-821.
  146. Plo I, Bellanne-Chantelot C, Vainchenker W. ATG2B and GSKIP: 2 new genes predisposing to myeloid malignancies. Mol Cell Oncol. 2016;3:e1094564.
  147. Saliba J, Saint-Martin C, Di Stefano A, et al. Germline duplication of ATG2B and GSKIP predisposes to familial myeloid malignancies. Nat Genet. 2015;47:1131-1140.
  148. Kirwan M, Walne AJ, Plagnol V, et al. Exome sequencing identifies autosomal-dominant SRP72 mutations associated with familial aplasia and myelodysplasia. Am J Hum Genet. 2012;90:888-892.
  149. Kirwan M, Vulliamy T, Marrone A, et al. Defining the pathogenic role of telomerase mutations in myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia. Hum Mutat. 2009;30:1567-1573.
  150. Savage SA. Dyskeratosis Congenita. In: Pagon RA, Adam MP, Ardinger HH, et al., eds. GeneReviews(R). Seattle (WA); 1993.
  151. Dong W, Qian Y, Yang L. Telomerase, hTERT and splice variants in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes. Leuk Res. 2014;38:830-835.
  152. MDS and AML in Fanconi anemia. Blood. 2016;127:3105.
  153. Clinton C, Gazda HT. Diamond-Blackfan Anemia. In: Pagon RA, Adam MP, Ardinger HH, et al., eds. GeneReviews(R). Seattle (WA); 1993.
  154. Myers K. Shwachman-Diamond Syndrome. In: Pagon RA, Adam MP, Ardinger HH, et al., eds. GeneReviews(R). Seattle (WA); 1993.
  155. Myers KC, Davies SM, Shimamura A. Clinical and molecular pathophysiology of Shwachman-Diamond syndrome: an update. Hematol Oncol Clin North Am. 2013;27:117-128, ix.
  156. Boztug K, Klein C. Genetics and pathophysiology of severe congenital neutropenia syndromes unrelated to neutrophil elastase. Hematol Oncol Clin North Am. 2013;27:43-60, vii.
  157. Horwitz MS, Corey SJ, Grimes HL, Tidwell T. ELANE mutations in cyclic and severe congenital neutropenia: genetics and pathophysiology. Hematol Oncol Clin North Am. 2013;27:19-41, vii.
  158. Ballmaier M, Germeshausen M. Congenital amegakaryocytic thrombocytopenia: clinical presentation, diagnosis, and treatment. Semin Thromb Hemost. 2011;37:673-681.
  159. Harutyunyan AS, Giambruno R, Krendl C, et al. Germline RBBP6 mutations in familial myeloproliferative neoplasms. Blood. 2016;127:362-365.
  160. DiNardo CD, Bannon SA, Routbort M, et al. Evaluation of Patients and Families With Concern for Predispositions to Hematologic Malignancies Within the Hereditary Hematologic Malignancy Clinic (HHMC). Clin Lymphoma Myeloma Leuk. 2016;16:417-428 e412.
  161. Talwalkar SS, Yin CC, Naeem RC, Hicks MJ, Strong LC, Abruzzo LV. Myelodysplastic syndromes arising in patients with germline TP53 mutation and Li-Fraumeni syndrome. Arch Pathol Lab Med. 2010;134:1010-1015.
  162. Chen DH, Below JE, Shimamura A, et al. Ataxia-Pancytopenia Syndrome Is Caused by Missense Mutations in SAMD9L. Am J Hum Genet. 2016;98:1146-1158.
  163. Nagamachi A, Matsui H, Asou H, et al. Haploinsufficiency of SAMD9L, an endosome fusion facilitator, causes myeloid malignancies in mice mimicking human diseases with monosomy 7. Cancer Cell. 2013;24:305-317.
  164. Tesi B, Davidsson J, Voss M, et al. Gain-of-function SAMD9L mutations cause a syndrome of cytopenia, immunodeficiency, MDS, and neurological symptoms. Blood. 2017;129:2266-2279.

21. PDF-version of the guideline