Ovarian minimal residual disease in chronic myeloid leukaemia

Ronit Abir*, Adina Aviram, Meora Feinmesser, Jerry Stein, Isaac Yaniv, Doris Parnes, Avi Ben-Haroush, Dror Meirow, Esther Rabizadeh, Benjamin Fisch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The options for fertility preservation include cryopreservation of ovarian tissue. Although transplantation of cryopreserved-thawed ovarian tissue in cancer survivors has resulted in live births, there is evidence of malignancy involvement in ovarian tissue, especially in leukaemia. The objectives of this study were to investigate the involvement of chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) in ovaries by both pathological/immunohistochemical methods and PCR for the identification of the Philadelphia chromosome (BCR-ABL transcripts). The patient was a survivor of paediatric CML whose ovaries were cryopreserved. The patient became infertile and requested ovarian reimplantation in adulthood. Pathological examinations of ovarian tissue with immunohistochemical stainings, quantitative PCR and two-step nested PCR were applied to identify BCR-ABL transcripts. Despite the lack of positive pathological/immunohistochemical evidence, PCR and two-step nested PCR revealed that the ovary was contaminated by malignant minimal residual CML. Survivors of childhood CML may harbour minimal residual disease in the ovaries. This finding stresses the danger of reseeding cancer by ovarian grafting, especially in patients with leukaemia. If ovarian grafting is considered, reimplantation should be preceded by examination of ovarian samples both pathologically and by molecular techniques. On the basis of molecular findings, ovarian autografting was not recommended in this case report.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)255-260
Number of pages6
JournalReproductive BioMedicine Online
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2014


  • PCR
  • Philadelphia chromosome
  • cancer seeding by ovarian grafting
  • chronic myeloid leukaemia
  • ovarian transplantation
  • pathological/immunohistochemical examination


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