Measurable residual disease in acute myeloid leukemia

Research group
Active research
Project owner
Institute of Biomedicine

Short description

Linda Fogelstrand's research group is focused on improving diagnostics in acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Specifically, we develop and evaluate tools for analysis of small amounts of leukemic cells, measurable residual disease (MRD). These tools can help in treatment decisions and/or be used for monitoring for early detection of relapse. We readily transfer our results to clinical use at the Department of Clinical Chemistry and Center for Medical Genomics. While aiding the clinic with these tools, we also provide increased knowledge about the genetics and disease course of AML.

Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is the most common form of acute leukemia. Unfortunately, the prognosis is poor, mostly due to high frequency of relapses using the current treatment strategies. Over the last years, it has become increasingly evident that the response to AML treatment, measurable residual disease (MRD), is a very strong prognostic factor. However, problems with standardization and applicability in individual patients hamper clinical usage of MRD analyses.

The overall aim of our research is to improve the basis for treatment decisions for children and adults with acute leukemia. We focus on improvement and usage of analyses of MRD. We have developed a novel analysis using next generation sequencing for MRD in AML based on the presence of leukemia-specific mutations; deep sequencing (deep seq). Our research has enabled clinical implementation of deep seq for MRD assessment in AML with mutation in NPM1. We currently evaluate the clinical usability of patient-tailored deep-seq for treatment response and for early detection of relapse. We are also working with more established methods for MRD analysis; flow cytometry and RT-qPCR, and how methods can be combined for improved understanding.

Our work is closely linked to the hematology diagnostics departments at Sahlgrenska University Hospital. We collaborate closely with clinical hematologists and pediatric oncologists and take active part in the Nordic Organization for Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, the Swedish AML group, and Genomics Medicine Sweden. Together with other hematology research groups at our institute, we aim for a fruitful hematological research environment and continuous translation of research results into clinical diagnostics.

Alumni: Azadeh Anbarlou, master project, Louise Kramén, master project, Adam Molnar, master project, Borhan Saeed, postdoctoral fellow.

Linda Fogelstrand
Grupp Fogelstrand 2021

Group members

Anastasia Soboli
Anna Rehammar
Erik Delsing Malmberg
Giti Shah Barkhordar
Gustav Orrsjö
Kajsa Olde
Sofie Johansson Alm