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Åke Borg

Åke Borg

Principal investigator

Åke Borg

Isochromosome 17q in blast crisis of chronic myeloid leukemia and in other hematologic malignancies is the result of clustered breakpoints in 17p11 and is not associated with coding TP53 mutations


  • Thoas Fioretos
  • Bodil Strömbeck
  • Therese Törngren
  • Bertil Johansson
  • Rolf Billstrom
  • Åke Borg
  • Per-Gunnar Nilsson
  • Herman Van Den Berghe
  • Anne Hagemeijer
  • Felix Mitelman
  • Mattias Höglund

Summary, in English

An isochromosome of the long arm of chromosome 17, i(17q), is the most frequent genetic abnormality observed during the disease progression of Philadelphia chromosome-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), and has been described as the sole anomaly in various other hematologic malignancies. The i(17q) hence plays a presumably important pathogenetic role both in leukemia development and progression. This notwithstanding, the molecular consequences of this abnormality have not been investigated in detail. We have analyzed 21 hematologic malignancies (8 CML in blast crisis, 8 myelodysplastic syndromes [MDS], 2 acute myeloid leukemias, 2 chronic lymphocytic leukemias, and 1 acute lymphoblastic leukemia) with i(17q) by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Using a yeast artificial chromosome (YAC) contig, derived from the short arm of chromosome 17, all cases were shown to have a breakpoint in 17p. In 12 cases, the breaks occurred within the Smith-Magenis Syndrome (SMS) common deletion region in 17p11, a gene-rich region which is genetically unstable. In 10 of these 12 cases, we were able to further map the breakpoints to specific markers localized within a single YAC clone. Six other cases showed breakpoints located proximally to the SMS common deletion region, but still within 17p11, and yet another case had a breakpoint distal to this region. Furthermore, using chromosome 17 centromere-specific probes, it could be shown that the majority of the i(17q) chromosomes (11 of 15 investigated cases) were dicentric, ie, they contained two centromeres, strongly suggesting that i(17q) is formed through an intrachromosomal recombination event, and also implicating that the i(17q), in a formal sense, should be designated idic(17)(p11). Because i(17q) formation results in loss of 17p material, potentially uncovering the effect of a tumor suppressor on the remaining 17p, the occurrence of TP53 mutations was studied in 17 cases by sequencing the entire coding region. In 16 cases, no TP53 mutations were found, whereas one MDS displayed a homozygous deletion of TP53. Thus, our data suggest that there is no association between i(17q) and coding TP53 mutations, and that another tumor suppressor gene(s), located in proximity of the SMS common deletion region, or in a more distal location, is of pathogenetic importance in i(17q)-associated leukemia.


  • Division of Clinical Genetics
  • Breastcancer-genetics
  • Division of Hematology and Transfusion Medicine

Publishing year












Document type

Journal article


American Society of Hematology


  • Hematology




  • ISSN: 1528-0020