(ChemotherapyAdvisor) – Expression of the FCHSD2 protein predicts remission and survival time among patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), Canadian researchers reported in Leukemia Research.

“Our study, for the first time, demonstrates FCHSD2 as a predictor of outcome for AML patients,” reported senior author Mark D. Minden, MD, PhD, Ontario Cancer Institute, Toronto, Ontario, and coauthors. “The determination of FCHSD2 expression at the time of diagnosis could help identify the response of AML patients to chemotherapy.”

Previous reports have shown that elevated expression of FCHSD2, a little-studied membrane scaffold protein, is associated with chemoresistance in U937 histiocytic lymphoma cells. In the new study, the authors employed qRT-PCR to measure FCHSD2 expression in 71 AML patients’ peripheral blood or bone marrow blasts.

Continue Reading

FCHSD2 levels were negatively associated with both overall survival time (r= – 0.7646, p<0.0001) and relapse-free survival time (r = -0.8165, p< 0.0001).

“By dividing patients into high and low-expression groups using a FCHSD2 expression threshold value of 0.001, the median survival of the high expression group (72 days) was shorter than in the low expression group (2472 days),” Dr. Minden and colleagues reported. “The average FCHSD2 expression level in 41 patients with complete remission was significantly lower than in 30 non-responder patients (p<0.0001).”

Among 32 newly-diagnosed AML patients undergoing induction chemotherapy, those with lower FCHSD2 expression prior to chemotherapy were more likely to achieve remission than were high-FCHSD2 patients, the authors reported. FCHSD2 should therefore be considered for inclusion in gene expression panels that are under development for the prediction of AML patients’ chemotherapy responses, they argued.

“In addition, the finding of clinical importance of FCHSD2 expression in AML suggests that an understanding of how the protein works may lead to the development of new therapies for AML,” they wrote.