Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukemia With Fibrosis Is a Distinct Disease Subset With Myeloproliferative Features and Frequent JAK2 p.V617F Mutations

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A subset of patients with chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML) presents with significance myelofibrosis. In myelodysplastic syndromes, significant myelofibrosis has been associated with adverse outcomes and p53 dysregulation. However, in CMML the clinical and molecular correlates of significant myelofibrosis at presentation remain poorly understood. From a cohort of 651 CMML patients, we identified retrospectively 20 (3.1%) cases with moderate to severe reticulin fibrosis (CMML-F) detected at diagnosis, and we compared them to CMML patients without fibrosis (n=631) seen during the same period. Patients with CMML-F had a median age of 69.8 years (range, 24.8 to 91.2 y) and most (13; 65%) were men. Patients with CMML-F differed significantly from other CMML patients across the following parameters: white blood count, absolute monocyte count, serum lactate dehydrogenase level, splenomegaly, and bone marrow blast percentage. Notably, the frequency of JAK2 p.V617F mutation was higher in CMML-F patients compared with other CMML patients (P<0.001). Most CMML-F patients (12/20; 60%) had myeloproliferative CMML. Dysregulation of p53 was uncommon in CMML-F. CMML-F patients tended to have a shorter median overall survival compared with other CMML patients (P=0.079). Multivariate analysis using the Cox proportional hazards model showed an independent association between CMML-F and overall survival (P=0.047). In summary, unlike typical CMML, CMML-F is commonly associated with JAK2 p.V617F. The high frequency of myeloproliferative features and JAK2 p.V617F mutation, and the low frequency of p53 dysregulation, suggest that fibrosis in the context of CMML has a different pathogenesis from that previously reported in myelodysplastic syndrome.

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