CEBPA-bZip mutations are associated with favorable prognosis in de novo AML: a report from the Children's Oncology Group.

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DOI: 10.1182/blood.2020009652


Biallelic CEBPA mutations are associated with favorable outcomes in acute myeloid leukemia (AML). We evaluated the clinical and biologic implications of CEBPA-basic leucine zipper (CEBPA-bZip) mutations in children and young adults with newly diagnosed AML. CEBPA-bZip mutation status was determined in 2958 patients with AML enrolled on Children's Oncology Group trials (NCT00003790, NCT0007174, NCT00372593, NCT01379181). Next-generation sequencing (NGS) was performed in 1863 patients (107 with CEBPA mutations) to characterize the co-occurring mutations. CEBPA mutational status was correlated with disease characteristics and clinical outcomes. CEBPA-bZip mutations were identified in 160 (5.4%) of 2958 patients, with 132 (82.5%) harboring a second CEBPA mutation (CEBPA-double-mutated [CEBPA-dm]) and 28 (17.5%) had a single CEBPA-bZip only mutation. The clinical and laboratory features of the 2 CEBPA cohorts were very similar. Patients with CEBPA-dm and CEBPA-bZip experienced identical event-free survival (EFS) of 64% and similar overall survival (OS) of 81% and 89%, respectively (P = .259); this compared favorably to EFS of 46% and OS of 61% in patients with CEBPA-wild-type (CEBPA-WT) (both P < .001). Transcriptome analysis demonstrated similar expression profiles for patients with CEBPA-bZip and CEBPA-dm. Comprehensive NGS of patients with CEBPA mutations identified co-occurring CSF3R mutations in 13.1% of patients and GATA2 mutations in 21.5% of patients. Patients with dual CEBPA and CSF3R mutations had an EFS of 17% vs 63% for patients with CEBPA-mutant or CSF3R-WT (P < .001) with a corresponding relapse rate (RR) of 83% vs 22%, respectively (P < .001); GATA2 co-occurrence did not have an impact on outcome. CEBPA-bZip domain mutations are associated with favorable clinical outcomes, regardless of monoallelic or biallelic status. Co-occurring CSF3R and CEBPA mutations are associated with a high RR that nullifies the favorable prognostic impact of CEBPA mutations.

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