Summary Peripheral blood stem cells (PBSC) have been used increasingly for haemopoietic reconstitution after marrow‐ablative chemotherapy in patients with acute leukaemia because of the possibility that there is a lower risk of leukaemic contamination. We have developed a titration assay using a competitive reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT‐PCR) which is able to estimate the number of AML1/ETO transcripts so that minimal residual disease (MRD) can be monitored quantitatively in patients with t(8;21) acute myelogenous leukaemia (AML). Using a qualitative RT‐PCR method, AML1/ETO transcripts could be detected in all samples from 15 first PBSC harvests and 11 second PBSC harvests obtained from 15 patients with t(8;21) AML. With our competitive RT‐PCR assay, the number of AML1/ETO transcripts was found to be lower in the second PBSC harvest than that in the first in every individual. Furthermore, MRD in PBSC harvests was less than that in the corresponding bone marrow obtained on the day of PBSC collection in the individual patients studied. In 10 patients who received autologous blood stem cell transplantation (ABSCT), we could not find a relationship between the number of AML1/ETO transcripts in the infused PBSC harvests and the clinical outcome after ABSCT. The present study clearly indicates that although PBSC harvests collected after consolidation chemotherapy are contaminated by leukaemic cells, the degree of leukaemic contamination may decrease as chemotherapy is repeated. The mobilization of PBSC by repeated chemotherapy may provide an advantageous source of haemopoietic stem cells for ABSCT.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||British Journal of Haematology|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 1995|
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