Nijmegen breakage syndrome (NBS) is a rare autosomal recessive chromosomal instability disorder characterized by microcephaly, immunodeficiency, radiosensitivity and a very high predisposition to malignancy. The gene responsible for the disease, NBS1, is located on chromosome 8q21 and encodes a protein called nibrin. After identification of the gene, a truncating 5 bp deletion, 657-661delACAAA, was identified as the disease-causing mutation in patients with the NBS. In this report, we describe two patients with NBS and T-lymphoblastic leukemia/lymphoma in a Macedonian family. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first family with NBS reported from Macedonia. Both children presented with microcephaly, syndactyly and the development of T cell lymphoblastic lekemia/lymphoma at the age of 7 and 10 years, respectively. The molecular analysis of NBS1 genes in our patients showed homozygosity for the 657del5 mutation in the NBS1 gene. The parents were heterozygotes for the 657del5 mutation and they had no knowledge of a consanguineous relationship. The first child was treated with the International Berlin-Frankfurt-Münster (BFM)-Non Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) protocol and achieved a complete remission that lasted for 21 months. Subsequently, he developed a medullar relapse with hyperleukocytosis and died due to lethal central nervous system (CNS) complications. The second child was treated according to the International Collaborative Treatment Protocol for Children and Adolescents with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia 2009 (AIOP-BFM ALL 2009) protocol. Unfortunately, remission was not achieved.
Background: Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common childhood cancer. This study was designed to determine the clinical, biological features and outcomes among children with ALL treated at the only pediatric hematology-oncology center in North Macedonia.
Patients and methods: Seventy four consecutive children age 1 to 14 years, diagnosed with ALL between January 1, 2010 and October 31, 2017 and treated according to ALL IC BFM 2002 protocol were retrospectively evaluated.
Results: The median age at diagnosis was 5 years and males were predominant (60.8%). Precursor B-cell ALL was diagnosed in 81.1% of patients, while 18.9% had T cell ALL. CNS involvement at the time of diagnoses was present in 6.8% of patients. Complete remission was achieved in 93.2% of patients. The induction death rate was 5.4%. The rate of death during first complete remission was 4.1%. Relapse occurred in 13.5% of patients. After a median observation time of 44 months, the 5-year overall survival (OS) and event-free survival (EFS) rates (± standard error) were 79.4% ± 5.2% and 74% ± 5.7%, respectively. The 5-year EFS rate for patients categorized as standard risk by NCI criteria was significantly higher than for high risk patients (83.3% versus 46.7%; P<0.001). Patients with precursor B-cell ALL and negative minimal residual disease (MRD) status at the end of induction had the best prognoses.
Conclusion: Our study demonstrated that the treatment results of childhood ALL in North Macedonia are comparable to those obtained in the ALL IC BFM 2002 trial.