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Genes may predict toxicity to leukaemia therapy:

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

US researchers have identified genetic variations - polymorphisms - that could cause children with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) to react badly to some chemotherapy drugs. The findings could help patients avoid harmful and potentially life-threatening side-effects of these drugs, and potentially allow doctors to individualise ALL chemotherapy according to each patient. "Such individualised therapy would eliminate the time-consuming trial-and-error approach to finding the right dose for a patient," said researcher Mary Relling, of St Jude's Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. The researchers identified 16 polymorphisms within genes that are known to affect the influence the pharmacodynamics of the drug in the body. The findings are published in the May 15 issue of Blood.

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