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1.  Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia with hyperleukocytosis at presentation 
Blood research  2014;49(1):29-35.
Background
Hyperleukocytosis caused by acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is associated with early morbidity and mortality due to hyperviscosity arising from the excessive number of leukocytes.This study was designed to assess the incidence of hyperleukocytosis, survival outcomes, and adverse features among pediatric ALL patients with hyperleukocytosis.
Methods
Between January 2001 and December 2010, 104 children with previously untreated ALL were enrolled at the Pusan National University Hospital. All of them were initially stratified based on the National Cancer Institute (NCI) risk; 48 (46.2%) were diagnosed with high-risk ALL. The medical charts of these patients were retrospectively reviewed.
Results
Twenty (19.2%) of the 104 children with ALL had initial leukocyte counts of >100×109/L, and 11 patients had a leukocyte count of >200×109/L. Male gender, T-cell phenotype, and massive splenomegaly were positively associated with hyperleukocytosis. Common early complications during induction therapy included renal dysfunction, and central nervous system hemorrhage. The complete remission (CR) rate for the pediatric ALL patients with hyperleukocytosis (94.1%) was similar to the overall CR rate (95.6%). The estimated 3-year event free survival (EFS) and overall survival of ALL children with hyperleukocytosis were 75.0% and 81.2%, respectively. However, patients with initial leukocyte counts >200×109/L had a lower EFS than those with initial leukocyte counts 100-200×109/L (63.6% vs. 100%; P=0.046).
Conclusion
The outcome of pediatric ALL cases with an initial leukocyte count >200×109/L was very poor, probably due to early toxicity-related death during induction therapy.
doi:10.5045/br.2014.49.1.29
PMCID: PMC3974953  PMID: 24724064
Pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia; Hyperleukocytosis; Central nervous system hemorrhage
2.  The effectiveness of tacrolimus and minidose methotrexate in the prevention of acute graft-versus-host disease following allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in children: a single-center study in Korea 
The Korean Journal of Hematology  2012;47(2):113-118.
Background
Knowledge of the roles of tacrolimus and minidose methotrexate (MTX) in the prevention of acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD) in pediatric allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is limited. We retrospectively evaluated the engraftment status, incidence of aGVHD and chronic GVHD (cGVHD), and toxicities of tacrolimus and minidose MTX in aGVHD prophylaxis in children undergoing allogeneic HSCT.
Methods
Seventeen children, who underwent allogeneic HSCT and received tacrolimus and minidose MTX as GVHD prophylaxis from March 2003 to February 2011, were reviewed retrospectively. All the patients received tacrolimus since the day before transplantation at a dose of 0.03 mg/kg/day and MTX at a dose of 5 mg/m2 on days 1, 3, 6, and 11.
Results
Of the 17 patients, 9 received human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-matched related donor transplants, and 8 received HLA-matched, or partially mismatched unrelated donor transplants. The median time for follow-up was 55 months. The incidence of aGVHD in the related and unrelated donor groups was 22.2% and 42.9%, respectively. cGVHD was not observed. To maintain therapeutic blood levels of tacrolimus, the younger group (<8 years of age) required an increased mean dose compared to the older group (≥8 years) (P=0.0075). The adverse events commonly associated with tacrolimus included hypomagnesemia (88%), nephrotoxicity (23%), and hyperglycemia (23%).
Conclusion
Tacrolimus and minidose MTX were well tolerated and effective in GVHD prophylaxis in pediatric patients undergoing allogeneic HSCT. Children <8 years of age undergoing HSCT required increased doses of tacrolimus to achieve therapeutic levels.
doi:10.5045/kjh.2012.47.2.113
PMCID: PMC3389059  PMID: 22783357
Tacrolimus; Methotrexate; Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; Acute graft-versus-host disease; Children
3.  Hereditary hemolytic anemia in Korea from 2007 to 2011: A study by the Korean Hereditary Hemolytic Anemia Working Party of the Korean Society of Hematology 
Blood research  2013;48(3):211-216.
Background
The number of patients diagnosed with hereditary hemolytic anemia (HHA) has increased since the advent of novel diagnostic techniques that accurately identify this disorder. Here, we report data from a survey on the prevalence and characteristics of patients diagnosed with HHA in Korea from 2007 to 2011.
Methods
Information on patients diagnosed with HHA in Korea and their clinical and laboratory results were collected using a survey questionnaire. Globin gene and red blood cell (RBC) enzyme analyses were performed. In addition, we analyzed data collected by pediatricians.
Results
In total, 195 cases of HHA were identified. Etiologies identified for HHA were RBC membranopathies, hemoglobinopathies, and RBC enzymopathies, which accounted for 127 (64%), 39 (19.9%), and 26 (13.3%) cases, respectively. Of the 39 patients with hemoglobinopathies, 26 were confirmed by globin gene analysis, including 20 patients with β-thalassemia minor, 5 patients with α-thalassemia minor, and 1 patient with unstable hemoglobin disease.
Conclusion
The number of patients diagnosed with hemoglobinopathies and RBC enzymopathies has increased considerably since the previous survey on HHA in Korea, dated from 1997 to 2006. This is likely the result of improved diagnostic techniques. Nevertheless, there is still a need for more sensitive diagnostic tests utilizing flow cytometry and for better standardization of test results to improve the accuracy of diagnosis of RBC membranopathies in Korea. Additionally, more accurate assays for the identification of RBC enzymopathies are warranted.
doi:10.5045/br.2013.48.3.211
PMCID: PMC3786282  PMID: 24086942
Congenital hemolytic anemia; Hereditary spherocytosis; Thalassemia; Congenital nonspherocytic anemia
4.  Primary Undifferentiated Penile Sarcoma in Adolescence 
Korean Journal of Urology  2012;53(10):733-736.
We report a case of primary penile undifferentiated sarcoma. A 16-year-old adolescent man visited Pusan National University Hospital complaining of a painless mass on his penis that was increasing in size. Magnetic resonance images revealed a 5×5-cm mass and pathological examinations revealed small round cell sarcomas with neuroendocrine differentiation. The tumor, which had metastatic pulmonary nodules, was treated by tumorectomy and systemic chemotherapy. Thirty-four months after the initial diagnosis, the patient was still alive without evidence of local recurrence or metastatic disease. This is our second case of an undifferentiated penile sarcoma.
doi:10.4111/kju.2012.53.10.733
PMCID: PMC3490096  PMID: 23136636
Adolescence; Penile cancer; Sarcoma
5.  Expression of 4-1BB and 4-1BBL in thymocytes during thymus regeneration 
Experimental & Molecular Medicine  2009;41(12):896-911.
4-1BB, a member of the tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR) superfamily, is a major costimulatory receptor that is rapidly expressed on the surface of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells after antigen- or mitogen-induced activation. The interaction of 4-1BB with 4-1BBL regulates immunity and promotes the survival and expansion of activated T cells. In this study, the expression of 4-1BB and 4-1BBL was examined during regeneration of the murine thymus following acute cyclophosphamide-induced involution. Four-color flow cytometry showed that 4-1BB and 4-1BBL were present in the normal thymus and were preferentially expressed in the regenerating thymus, mainly in CD4+CD8+ double-positive (DP) thymocytes. Furthermore, the CD4loCD8lo, CD4+CD8lo and CD4loCD8+ thymocyte subsets, representing stages of thymocyte differentiation intermediate between DP and single-positive (SP) thymocytes, also expressed 4-1BB and 4-1BBL during thymus regeneration but to a lesser degree. Interestingly, the 4-1BB and 4-1BBL positive cells among the CD4+CD8+ DP thymocytes present during thymus regeneration were TCRhi and CD69+ unlike the corresponding controls. Moreover, the 4-1BB and 4-1BBL positive cells among the intermediate subsets present during thymus regeneration also exhibited TCRhi/int and CD69+/int phenotypes, indicating that 4-1BB and 4-1BBL are predominantly expressed by the positively selected population of the CD4+CD8+ DP and the intermediate thymocytes during thymus regeneration. RT-PCR and Western blot analyses confirmed the presence and elevated levels of 4-1BB and 4-1BBL mRNA and protein in thymocytes during thymus regeneration. We also found that the interaction of 4-1BB with 4-1BBL promoted thymocyte adhesion to thymic epithelial cells. Our results suggest that 4-1BB and 4-1BBL participate in T lymphopoiesis associated with positive selection during recovery from acute thymic involution.
doi:10.3858/emm.2009.41.12.095
PMCID: PMC2802685  PMID: 19745604
4-1BB ligand; antigens, CD137; cell differentiation; thymus gland; T-lymphocytes
6.  Intrapulmonary Cystic Lymphangioma in a 2-month-old Infant 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2004;19(3):458-461.
Lymphangioma is an abnormal collection of lymphatics that are developmentally isolated from the normal lymphatic system. Lymphangioma rarely presents as a solitary pulmonary lesion. We report a rare case of intrapulmonary cystic lymphangioma involving the upper lobe of the right lung, which presented with dyspnea in a 2-month-old infant. High-resolution computed tomography (HRCT) of the chest demonstrated a well-circumscribed, multiseptate, cystic lesion in the upper lobe of the right lung, mimicking the feature of type I congenital cystic adenomatoid malformation. The tumor was removed by bilobectomy of the upper and middle lobes of the right lung, and its pathologic examination confirmed the diagnosis of an intrapulmonary cystic lymphangioma.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2004.19.3.458
PMCID: PMC2816851  PMID: 15201516
Lung; Lymphangioma, Cystic; Infant
7.  Recurrent Self-Limited Fungemia Caused by Yarrowia lipolytica in a Patient with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2001;39(3):1200-1201.
Yarrowia lipolytica is a weakly pathogenic yeast that is rarely isolated from the blood. We observed transient recurrent catheter-related fungemia attributable to this organism in a leukemic patient. The fungemia and accompanying fever subsided spontaneously. The data suggest that it might be possible to withhold specific treatment for Y. lipolytica fungemia even in an immunocompromised patient.
doi:10.1128/JCM.39.3.1200-1201.2001
PMCID: PMC87906  PMID: 11230460
8.  Clinical and hematologic manifestations in patients with Diamond Blackfan anemia in Korea 
The Korean Journal of Hematology  2012;47(2):131-135.
Background
Diamond Blackfan anemia (DBA), characterized by impaired red cell production, is a rare condition that is usually symptomatic in early infancy. The purpose of this study was to assess nationwide experiences of DBA encountered over a period of 20 years.
Methods
The medical records of 56 patients diagnosed with DBA were retrospectively reviewed from November 1984 to July 2010. Fifteen institutions, including 13 university hospitals, participated in this study.
Results
The male-to-female ratio of patients with DBA was 1.67:1. The median age of diagnosis was 4 months, and 74.1% were diagnosed before 1 year of age. From 2000 to 2009, annual incidence was 6.6 cases per million. Excluding growth retardation, 38.2% showed congenital defects: thumb deformities, ptosis, coarctation of aorta, ventricular septal defect, strabismus, etc. The mean hemoglobin concentration was 5.1±1.9 g/dL, mean corpuscular volume was 93.4±11.6 fL, and mean number of reticulocytes was 19,700/mm3. The mean cellularity of bone marrow was 75%, with myeloid:erythroid ratio of 20.4:1. After remission, 48.9% of patients did not need further steroids. Five patients with DBA who received hematopoietic transplantation have survived. Cancer developed in 2 cases (3.6%).
Conclusion
The incidence of DBA is similar to data already published, but our study had a male predilection. Although all patients responded to initial treatment with steroids, about half needed further steroids after remission. It is necessary to collect further data, including information regarding management pathways, from nationwide DBA registries, along with data on molecular analyses.
doi:10.5045/kjh.2012.47.2.131
PMCID: PMC3389062  PMID: 22783360
Diamond Blackfan anemia; Anemia; Congenital defects
9.  Novel influenza A (H1N1) 2009 infection in the pediatric patients with hematologic and oncologic diseases in the Yeungnam region 
Korean Journal of Pediatrics  2011;54(3):117-122.
Purpose
Natural history and consequences of the novel 2009 influenza A H1N1 (2009 H1N1) infection in immunocompromised pediatric patients are not yet fully understood. In this study, we investigated the clinical features and outcomes of the 2009 H1N1 infection in pediatric patients with hematological and oncological diseases.
Methods
We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of 528 patients who had hematological and oncological diseases and who were treated at 7 referral centers located in the Yeungnam region. Among the 528 patients, 27 with definite diagnosis of 2009 H1N1 infection were the subjects of this study. All patients were divided into the following 3 groups: patients who were receiving chemotherapy (group 1), patients who were immunosuppressed due to a non-malignant hematological disease (group 2), and patients who were off chemotherapy and had undergone their last chemotherapy course within 2 years from the influenza A pandemic (group 3).
Results
All 28 episodes of 2009 H1N1 infection were treated with the antiviral agent oseltamivir (Tamiflu®), and 20 episodes were treated after hospitalization. Group 1 patients had higher frequencies of lower respiratory tract infection and longer durations of fever and hospitalization as compared to those in group 2. Ultimately, all episodes resolved completely with no complications.
Conclusion
These results suggest that early antiviral therapy did not influence the morbidity or mortality of pediatric patients with hematological and oncological diseases in the Yeungnam region of Korea after the 2009 H1N1 infection. However, no definite conclusions can be drawn because of the small sample size.
doi:10.3345/kjp.2011.54.3.117
PMCID: PMC3120997  PMID: 21738541
Influenza A Virus; H1N1 Subtype; Immunocompromised Patients; Hematologic Diseases; Oseltamivir; Child

Results 1-9 (9)