Myelodysplastic Syndrome with concomitant t(5;21)(q15;q22) and del(5)(q13q33): case report and review of literature
Chromosomal abnormalities lead to the development of hematologic malignancies such as Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS). Known chromosomal changes causing MDS include deletion of the long arm of chromosome 5, runt-related transcription factor 1 (RUNX1) also known as acute myeloid leukemia 1 protein (AML1), and very rarely fusion genes involving RUNX1 at t(5;21)(q15;q22). We present a case of a 71-year-old female with MDS, refractory anemia with excess blasts, type 1, with a combination of two cytogenetic abnormalities, specifically a concomitant translocation between chromosomes 5q15 and 21q22 and deletion of chromosome 5q13q33. Fluorescence in-situ hybridization (FISH) using a probe for RUNX1 (AML1), localized to 21q22, showed three FISH signals for RUNX1, consistent with rearrangement of RUNX1. Therapy was started with Lenalidomide leading to normal blood counts. Most significantly, repeat cytogenetics revealed normal karyotype and resolution of deletion on the long arm of chromosome 5 and a t(5;21). FISH negative for deletion 5q. The results altogether meet criteria for a complete cytogenetic remission (CR). We report a new case of t(5;21)(q15;q22) involving the RUNX1 gene and del(5)(q13q33) in a MDS patient, a combination of chromosomal abnormalities heretofore not reported in the literature. RUNX1 rearrangement is usually associated with an adverse prognosis in AML and MDS. Deletions of 5q are typically associated with poor prognosis in AML, however it is usually associated with a favorable prognosis in MDS. Our patient responded very well to Lenalidomide therapy with achievement of CR. Lenalidomide is approved for treatment of anemia in low and intermediate risk MDS with del (5q), however based on a search of literature it seems that RUNX1 mutations are also more prominent in patients who have responded to Lenalidomide therapy. MDS is a genomically unstable disease. Hence, it is conceivable that our patient started with a 5q minus syndrome and then acquired the second hit RUNX1 translocation leading to an accelerated phase of myeloid neoplasm or refractory anemia with excess blasts, type 1. Hence, the temporal relationship between acquisition of del 5q and RUNX1 rearrangement may have influenced the clinical outcome and possibly response to therapy.