Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Coverage from Every Angle

Could a Novel Endogenous Ligand Be a Potential Target for CLL Treatment?

By: Kayci Reyer
Posted: Wednesday, January 22, 2020

According to research published in BMC Cancer, Elabela (ELA), a peptide ligand for apelin receptors that inhibits apoptosis, may be a potential treatment target for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Serum levels of ELA were found to be consistently elevated in patients with this type of leukemia.

“The results of our study provide evidence that ELA and the apelinergic system can be valuable in targeted therapy and may also be useful in predicting patient prognosis, response to treatment, and follow-up,” concluded Didar Yanardag Acik, MD, of the Adana City Education and Research Hospital, Turkey, and colleagues.

The study included 42 patients with CLL who were diagnosed between 2012 and 2019 and 41 participants who did not have the disease. A baseline measurement of ELA serum levels was taken using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kits with an automated reader and specialized software. The group with CLL was found to have higher median ELA serum levels (6.7 ng/mL vs. 2 ng/mL, P  <  .001) than the control group, in addition to a higher median white blood cell count (27.1 × 103 cells/μL vs. 7.7 × 103 cells/μL, P <  .001) and median lymphocyte count (21.3 × 103 cells/μL vs. 2.1 × 103 cells/μL, P < .001). The median platelet level was lower in patients with CLL than in patients without (200 × 103/μL vs. 253 × 103/μL, P = .008).

No significant difference existed between the group with CLL and the control group in regard to mean hemoglobin levels, median neutrophil levels, or mean age. Although the group with CLL had a higher ratio of male patients than the control group, no correlation was noted between ELA serum levels and sex in either group. Likewise, no correlation was noted between serum levels and age.

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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