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Front. Cell Dev. Biol. | doi: 10.3389/fcell.2019.00137

Epigenetic priming in Childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

  • 1Institute of Biomedical Research of Salamanca (IBSAL), Spain
  • 2Institute of Molecular and Cellular Cancer Biology (IBMCC), Spain

Leukemogenesis is considered to be a process by which a normal cell acquires new but aberrant identity in order to disseminate a malignant clonal population. Under this setting, the phenotype of the leukemic cells is identical to the leukemia-initiating cell in which the genetic insult is taking place. Thus, with some exceptions, B-cell and T-cell childhood leukemias are supposed to arise from B- or T-committed cells. In contrast, several recent studies have revealed that genetic alterations may act in a “hit-and-run” way in the cell-of-origin by imposing the tumor cell identity giving rise to either B-cell or T-cell leukemias. This novel mechanism of cell transformation is mediated by an epigenetic priming mechanism that is established by the initial genetic lesion. This initial hit might be unnecessary for the subsequent tumor evolution and conservation, being the epigenetic priming the engine for the tumor evolution.

Keywords: epigenetic priming, reprogramming, childhood leukemia, B-ALL, T-ALL, Stem Cells

Received: 22 May 2019; Accepted: 05 Jul 2019.

Edited by:

Takaomi Sanda, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore

Reviewed by:

Pablo Menendez, Andusian Health Service, Spain
Hirotaka Matsui, Kumamoto University, Japan  

Copyright: © 2019 Vicente-Dueñas, Raboso-Gallego, Casado-García and Isidro-Hernández. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Mx. Carolina Vicente-Dueñas, Institute of Biomedical Research of Salamanca (IBSAL), Salamanca, Spain, cvd@usal.es