Preprint Review Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Etiology of Acute Leukemia. A Review

Version 1 : Received: 4 February 2021 / Approved: 9 February 2021 / Online: 9 February 2021 (10:09:21 CET)

How to cite: Tebbi, C.K. Etiology of Acute Leukemia. A Review. Preprints 2021, 2021020231. Tebbi, C.K. Etiology of Acute Leukemia. A Review. Preprints 2021, 2021020231.


Acute leukemias constitute some of the most common malignant disorders. Despite significant progress made in the treatment of these disorders, their etiology remains unknown. A large and diverse group of genetic and environmental variables have been proposed. The role of a variety of factors, including pre-existing and acquired genetic mutations, exposure to radiation and various chemicals during pre-conception, pregnancy and throughout life have been explored. The effects of inherited genetic variations and disorders, pre-existing diseases, infectious agents, hobbies, occupations, prior treatments and a host of other factors have been proposed, but none is universally applicable to all cases. Variation in the incidence and prognosis based on the age, sex, race, type of the disease, geographic area of residence and other factors are intriguing, but remains unexplained. Advances in genomic profiling, including genome‐wide gene expression, DNA copy number, and single nucleotide polymorphism [SNP] genotype may shed some light on the role of genetics in these disparities. Separate two-hit hypothesis for the development of acute myeloblastic and lymphoblastic leukemia have been proposed. The latter combines genetics and infection factors resulting in leukemogenesis. A number of pre- and post-natal environmental conditions and exposure to infections, including a mycovirus infected Aspergillus flavus, have been suggested. The exact nature, timing, sequence of the events and mechanisms resulting in occurrence of leukemia requires further investigations. This review summarizes some of the above factors and the direction for future research on the etiology of acute leukemias.


etiology; leukemia; acute lymphoblastic leukemia; acute myeloblastic leukemia; genetics; causes; occupations; hobbies; genetic; infections; mycovirus; aspergillus


Medicine and Pharmacology, Oncology and Oncogenics

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