Growing evidence from epidemiological studies strongly suggests that the increased leukemia rate is likely related to an abnormal immune response to infections early in life.1,2Recent experimental support for the hypothesis of “delayed infection” proposed by Mel Greaves as a cause of childhood leukemia came from Martin-Lorenzo et al. and Swaminathan et al. who demonstrated that exposure of genetically susceptible mice to infection can cause leukemia.3,4
Viruses & LuekemiaViruses have been suggested to play a role in the pathogenesis of ALL. Transforming viruses may integrate into the genome of precursor B cells, disturbing differentiation and proliferation control.2
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