Multidrug resistance parameters, tissue infiltration parameters, receptors for colony-stimulating factors (CSFr) and cell cycle parameters were analyzed using flow cytometry in 145, 109 initial and 36 relapsed or refractory, acute nonlymphoblastic leukemia (ANLL) patients to find out clinically more reliable functional parameters. Lung resistance-associated protein (LRP) was most frequently expressed in ANLL (44.1%) followed by P-glycoprotein (PGP) (35.9%) and multidrug resistance-associated protein (MRP) (8.3%). LRP and PGP were expressed more frequently in relapsed or refractory ANLL than initial ANLL cases. Complete remission rate after standard chemotherapy falls in PGP-positive cases (p = 0.001). CD44-positive ANLL cases relapsed more frequently. The organ tropism is different depending on the infiltration parameters, vascular cell adhesion molecule to splenomegaly, matrix metalloprotease-2 to hepatomegaly and to extramedullary infiltration other than spleen, liver or lymph node. The percentage of the granulocyte-macrophage-CSFr expression was high in M4 and M5, and granulocyte-CSFr-positive ANLL showed less extramedullary infiltration (p = 0.007) and more PGP expression. Ki-67 was expressed significantly less in refractory ANLL than initial ANLL and DNA topisomerase IIα was expressed significantly more in the surviving patients group. In conclusion, analysis of these new functional parameters could help to predict and overcome the clinical behavior of each ANLL at the time of diagnosis.

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