Leukemia Markers




Leukemia or leukaemia is a cancer of the blood or bone marrow and is characterized by an abnormal proliferation (production by multiplication) of blood cells, usually white blood cells (leukocytes). It is part of the broad group of diseases called hematological neoplasms.


The major forms of leukemia are divided into four categories. Myelogenous and lymphocytic leukemia each have acute and chronic forms. The terms myelogenous or lymphocytic denote the cell type involved.

Acute leukemia is a rapidly progressing disease that affects mostly cells that are unformed or primitive (not yet fully developed or differentiated). These immature cells cannot carry out their normal functions.


Chronic leukemia progresses slowly and permits the growth of greater numbers of more developed cells. In general, these more mature cells can carry out some of their normal functions.


Thus, the four major types of leukemia are: acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) or chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML), and acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) or chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).





  • a reliable tumor marker in chronic lymphocytic leukemia. PMID: 2502891



  • sCD52 was detectable and useful in the staging and monitoring of patients with chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL). PMID: 15329909


  • the serum ferritin in immature myeloblastic leukemia has the characteristics of a tumor associated marker. PMID: 1886510

  • serum ferritin concentration must be valued as a clinically useful tumor marker in myeloid leukemia, exhibiting a helpful and simple parameter in monitoring the activity of the disease. PMID: 3864536

Wilms tumor gene (WT1)

  • expressed in blasts of patients with acute leukemia, irrespective of lineage, and WT1 nuclear protein is detectable in the majority of such blasts. PMID: 12215007

  • a new tumor marker of leukemic blast cells of AML, ALL, and CML. PMID: 9669676

  • Wilms' tumor gene is frequently expressed in acute myeloblastic leukemias and may provide a marker for residual blast cells detectable by PCR. PMID: 8589020

  • wt-1 expression may be associated with the presence of malignant blast cells and the analysis of wt-1 gene expression via PCR may be a sensitive method for the detection of leukemic blast cells. PMID: 7808002