BCR-ABL1-negative myeloproliferative neoplasms: A review of molecular biology, diagnosis, and treatment

Erik Vakil, Ayalew Tefferi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


In 2008, the World Health Organization expanded the classification of myeloproliferative disorders based on increasing amounts of molecular and cytogenetic data. Myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN) that do not contain the BCR-ABL1 mutation include polycythemia vera (PV), essential thrombocythemia (ET), and primary myelofibrosis (PMF). JAK2V617F is the best characterized mutation in BCR-ABL1-negative neoplasms, with an estimated prevalence of more than 95% in PV, 50% in ET, and 50% in PMF. Current diagnostic strategies are increasingly reliant on molecular markers, and their prognostic value continues to be investigated. The use of aspirin, hydroxyurea, and phlebotomy for PV and ET, and the use of androgens, steroids, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy for PMF continues to be the mainstay of therapy. The only potentially curative therapy is allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, but treatment-related mortality remains high. There have been promising results from clinical trials that involve the JAK tyrosine kinase inhibitors TG101384 and INCB018424, but their role in future therapy is yet to be established. Despite the optimism, it is increasingly apparent that pathogenicity in BCR-ABL1-negative MPN is more complex than for chronic myeloid leukemia, and a pathognomonic mutation may not be forthcoming.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S37-S45
JournalClinical Lymphoma, Myeloma and Leukemia
Issue numberSUPPL.1
StatePublished - Jun 2011


  • Cytogenetics
  • Diagnostic strategy
  • Oncogenes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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