Lege Artis Medicinae

[New molecular based methods for diagnosis, classification and prognosis of leukemias]

ZVARA Ágnes, HACKLER László, PUSKÁS László G.

FEBRUARY 20, 2003

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2003;13(02)

[Normal functions of the cell are based on the precise regulation of various genes. If this strict regulation and the hierarchy of genes becomes upset due to some flaws of the system, the result will be cellular dysfunction which may eventually lead to carcinogenic transformation. The two main challenges in the classification of cancers are the discovery of new molecular markers characteristic to defined disease groups and the classification of already diagnosed or new cases into existing groups. This precise classification may open the door to tailored treatment or project the expected outcome of the disease. Today, there is unlimited access available to the databases containing sequences and localisation of the genes within the confines of Human Genome project. It provides significant help for the discovery of chromosome abnormalities and systematic analysis of gene expression patterns. This is important not only to understand normal functions of the cells, but it also contributes to the identification of new genes that are characteristic to given disease groups as markers and that are potential drug targets. Until the second half of the twentieth century the study of the function and regulation of genes was based on step by step investigation of individual genes. The fact that the genomes of an increasing number of organisms have become identified in whole or in part, numerous new techniques have been developed facilitating the systematic analysis of gene functions. The aim of this study is to summarise the new, molecular based possibilities for classification, diagnosis and prognosis of cancers, as well as to summarise the results of these areas, primarily from the point of view of leukemias.]

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