Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia

Topics: Bone marrow, Leukemia, Anemia Pages: 3 (1203 words) Published: December 1, 2011
Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Acute lymphoblastic leukemia(ALL) is a disease that occurs in the blood-making system of the body. ALL begins when the red blood cells are overcrowded by the white blood cells. This overproduction of white blood cells can cause Immune Hemolytic Anemia. Immune Hemolytic Anemia is a stronger and more destructive disease that affects the body’s immune system by prematurely destroying red blood cells and weakening the body’s infection fighting abilities. If Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia is found early enough it can be cured and sent into remission in almost all children and in many adults. 
Causes and Incidence

Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia results from a few different genetic factors. The genetic defect known as Ikaros may be responsible for a great deal of the ALL cases in infants. This defect causes an abnormality in the lymphocyte development. The genetic defect known as the Philadelphia (Ph) chromosome is also responsible for about 20 percent of the ALL cases in adults and 5 percent in children. There have also been cases of ALL caused by a genetic defect called TEL-AML1. This defect is easily treated with chemotherapy. The largest contributor to Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and all other Leukemia’s is genetic rearrangement, called translocation. Translocation is responsible for 65 percent of Leukemia cases. This is when some of the genes are changed or shuffled between a pair of chromosomes. 20 percent of ALL patients have a translocation of the 12 and 21 chromosomes which is the most least threatening case. Younger patients who have translocations in the 4 and 11 chromosomes and the 9 and 22 chromosomes have a very severe case. 
Signs and Symptoms

Acute lymphoblastic leukemia can be very difficult to recognize because its early signs are similar to those of the flu. Things like persistent fever, frequent infection, bone and joint pain, weakness, and swollen lymph nodes are all...
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