Pediatric leukemia represents a heterogeneous group of diseases characterized by germline and somatic mutations that manifest within the context of disturbances in the epigenetic machinery and genetic regulation. Advances in genomic medicine have allowed finer resolution of genetic and epigenetic strategies that can be effectively used to risk-stratify patients and identify novel targets for therapy. This review discusses the genetic and epigenetic mechanisms of leukemogenesis, particularly as it relates to acute lymphocytic leukemias, the mechanisms of epigenetic control of leukemogenesis, namely DNA methylation, histone modifications, microRNAs, and LINE-1 retroelements, and highlights opportunities for precision medicine therapeutics in further guiding disease management. Future efforts to broaden the integration of advances in genomic and epigenomic science into the practice of pediatric oncology will not only identify novel therapeutic strategies to improve clinical outcomes but also improve the quality of life for this unique patient population. Recent findings in precision therapeutics of acute lymphocytic leukemias over the past three years, along with some provocative areas of epigenetics research, are reviewed here.
- Pediatric Leukemia
- Precision Medicine
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)